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Curriculum

Core courses (2 course units):

Fall

NURS557
Principles of Palliative Care

This course examines national and global perspectives and clinical issues in the delivery of palliative care with diverse populations in multiple health care settings. Students focus on the care of persons with life-threatening, progressive illness, emphasizing respect for patients’ and families’ beliefs, values, and choices. Students also explore psychosocial and spiritual dimensions of palliative care. Historical, sociocultural, economic, legal, and ethical trends in palliative care are discussed. Factors affecting health care systems and societal attitudes are considered in evaluating the delivery of care during advanced illness and at the end of life. Students engage in the critical analysis of literature, research, and observational experiences concerning biopsychosocial needs of patients and families. Students acquire competencies in patient/family assessment, communication, decision-making, and interdisciplinary collaboration in palliative care.This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and Beyond.

Spring

NURS567
An Evidence-based Approach to Managing Symptoms in Advanced Illness

This course uses an evidence-based approach towards systematic assessment and management of common symptoms and symptom clusters accompanying progressive, life-limiting illnesses within a framework of nationally recognized standards and guidelines for palliative and end-of-life care. Students are prepared to apply principles of palliative management to diverse patient populations across clinical settings including acute, primary, long-term, and community care. Refer to course syllabus or email course faculty for respective requirements.

Elective courses (1 course units):

NURS511
Loss, Grief and Bereavement

Loss, grief and bereavement are pervasive aspects of the human experience. The content of this course provides a basis both for personal development and professional growth. Through a series of seminars, key issues surrounding loss, death, dying, grief and bereavement will be examined.

NURS525
Ethical Aspects of Health and Technology

Interdisciplinary approach to the study of the interface between ethics and law in the provision of health and illness care. This course draws upon the disciplines of philosophy, law, biomedical engineering and nursing in examining such concepts as the use/nonuse of biomedical technology, who and how one decides what shall be done for a given “patient,” and the “rights” and responsibilities (accountability) of all persons involved in health/illness care decisions. The interplay of ethical theory, personal value systems, law and technology will be stressed throughout. Lectures, seminars and case studies will be used.This course satisfies the Society & Social Structures Sector for Nursing Class of 2012 and Beyond.

NURS540
Current Issues In Health and Social Policy

Analysis of key contemporary issues in health and social policy that will provide students with a deeper understanding of the design and structure of the U.S. health care system, the policy initiatives that have shaped it, and the roles of the government, the private sector, and consumers and advocacy groups in setting the policy agenda. Seminars will examine the origins of each issue, the policies enacted and their effects, both intended and unintended, and will propose and debate the merits of alternative policy solutions. The role of health services and policy research in informing the policy debate and directions will be highlighted.

NURS636
Pain, Science, & Practice

This interprofessional course focuses on the biopsychosocial aspects of pain and pain management from the perspectives of individualized pain care, scientific discoveries, evidence-based practice and cross-disciplinary learning. Content includes an integrated overview of the neurobiology of pain, psychosocial aspects of the pain experience, pain assessment and outcomes measurement, pharmacological and nonpharmacological approaches to the treatment of acute and chronic pain syndromes, national health policies for pain, evidence-based guidelines and best practices, and interprofessional care delivery models. Peripheral and central modulation of pain, neuroanatomical pathways, neurochemical mediators, and genetics are examined as the basis for explaining pain perception, behaviors and responses to treatments. Pain assessment and management for vulnerable populations are addressed along with strategies to reduce pain treatment disparities. Several acute and chronic (persistent) pain syndromes are discussed across the continuum of care (e.g., primary care, hospital, outpatient pain centers, and home care). Current research findings and evidence-based guidelines are applied to interprofessional collaboration and clinical decision-making to promote optimal care and outcomes for persons experiencing pain. Through case-based and directed learning, classroom simulation, and interactive discussions with national leaders spanning multiple disciplines, students acquire a strong scientific and practice foundation in the clinical care of persons with acute and chronic pain.