Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Monash University

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2012 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
OfferedParkville First semester 2012 (Off-campus)
Parkville Second semester 2012 (Off-campus)
Coordinator(s)Ms Laura Dean

Quota applies

This unit is quota restricted. Selection is on a first-in, first enrolled basis. For more information please contact the faculty at http://www.pharm.monash.edu.au/courses/pg-coursework/contact.html


The unit will cover a range of clinical and non-clinical topics, enabling holistic pharmacist management of palliative care patients.

Clinical topics:

  • management of pain
  • management of symptoms other than pain
  • palliative care in nonmalignant disease
  • methods of medication administration
  • prescrbing in palliative care

Non-clinical topics:
  • palliative care principles
  • ethical issues
  • supportive care
  • access to palliative care medications
  • overview of the Australian palliative care system

The unit will focus on medication management issues related to symptom control and the pharmacist's role in managing palliative care patients and carers. When new symptoms develop or the patient's condition deteriorates, medication is an important part of providing optimal care. Often the treatment need is immediate, but the medication may be difficult to obtain or access.


  • Describe the principles of palliative care.
  • Discuss the multi-disciplinary approach to palliative care within the Australian palliative care system.
  • Apply pharmacological and non-pharmacological pain management knowledge to their professional practice.
  • Recognise, monitor, and pharmacologically and non-pharmacologically manage common non-pain symptoms and treatment side-effects.
  • Apply pharmacological and non-pharmacological knowledge to palliative care in the non-malignant settings of organ failure and neurological disease.
  • Have a working knowledge of how palliative cancer care medicines can be administered and accessed.
  • Apply the principles of prescribing and de-prescribing in palliative care.


Assessment will consist of:
Contributions to case studies in online moderated discussion forums: 50%
Two written assignments: 25% each
Submission of a learning portfolio (pass/fail). A pass in this assessment task is required for an overall pass in this unit.

Chief examiner(s)

Ms Laura Dean

Contact hours

Student are expected to allow 10-12 hours per week over the semester in study time.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Pharmacy, Palliative care