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Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences (PGCertHealSc) endorsed in Pain and Pain Management


A Postgraduate Certificate comprising 60 points focussing on pain and pain management. This qualification is designed to present an understanding of the importance of pain to the individual and to society, and how best to optimise its management. It provides candidates with the necessary skills to better understand and manage pain problems that pertain to their particular discipline within health care.

Allied health and medical professionals involved in the care, rehabilitation and management of people experiencing pain problems, such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nurses, podiatrists, chiropractors, and osteopaths would find this qualification to be of particular interest.

Our courses are endorsed by the International Association for the Study of Pain.


The Postgraduate Certificate would normally be completed in 1–2 years of part-time study.


a) Admission to the programme shall be subject to the approval of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Health Sciences).

b) Every candidate for the Certificate shall:

  1. be a graduate or possess an appropriate health professional qualification requiring at least three years' full-time tertiary study
  2. have experience of or be currently working in the relevant field of health care
  3. present evidence of ability for advanced level academic study.

Regulations for the Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences (PGCertHealSc) are available on the University of Otago website.

Structure of the Postgraduate Certificate in Health Sciences (PGCertHealSc) endorsed in Pain and Pain Management

i Three Compulsory Papers (45 points)
  • MSME 704 Introduction to Pain (15 points)
  • MSME 708 Introduction to Pain Management (15 points)
  • PAIN 701 Neurobiology of Pain (15 points)
ii One further approved paper (15 points)
Some recommended examples are :
  • PAIN 702 Biomedical Pain Management (15 points)
  • PAIN 703 Psychosocial and Cultural Aspects of Pain (15 points)
  • MSME 707 Musculoskeletal Management (15 points)
  • MSME 710 Recreational and Sports Injuries (15 points)
  • MSME 711 Pain Assessment (15 points)

Further information

Administrator Client Services
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Musculoskeletal Medicine
University of Otago, Christchurch
PO Box 4345, Christchurch, New Zealand
Tel +64 3 364 0469