Palliative Care in Long Term Conditions

This module is now open only to students completing a BSc programme with Education for Health.

This module, previously known as Non-Malignant Palliative Care, is aimed at any health care professional who participates in the delivery and management of care for people experiencing long-term symptoms, their families and carers. This module explores the aetiology and impact of major long-term life limiting disease and focuses on the role of symptom management in improving the patient’s quality of life.

On completion of the module successful students will be able to suggest, initiate and vary treatment in response to individual needs. They will demonstrate sound knowledge of the literature relevant to symptom relief and supportive and palliative care in relation to the delivery of holistic, evidence based care to patients, their families and carers.

This module is validated by The Open University. The Regulations for validated awards of The Open University can be seen here.

Why choose this module?

Benefits include:

  • The opportunity to network with fellow students from a range of disciplines and specialties.
  • Access to experts.
  • Individuals will be able to challenge current practice and embed evidence based practice into their delivery of care.
  • Greater job satisfaction which leads to a deeper commitment to service delivery and patient care.
  • Opportunity to build to a Diploma in Higher Education or BSc (Honours) degree.
  • Gaining academic credit for a named award. A number of credits is assigned to each module, which indicates the amount of learning undertaken, and the specified credit level indicates the relative depth of learning involved. Credit is a means of quantifying and recognising learning whenever and wherever it is achieved. Credit may also help you transfer to another programme either within Education for Health or at a different institution.
  • Upon the completion of this module students should possess the qualities and knowledge to assist their further development as professionals.
What will I study?

The subjects covered include:

  • Setting the scene
    Professional, moral & ethical issues as they relate to end of life care
  • Cardiorespiratory and nervous system
    Understanding symptoms in major life-limiting long-term conditions – impact of co-morbidities
  • Assessing and care planning
    Assessing the impact of symptoms in major life-limiting long-term conditions and formulating a management plan
    Holistic care and patient choice
  • Management of symptoms
    Maximising therapy (pharmacological and non-pharmacological approaches)
    Psychological interventions
  • Organization of palliative care services
    Evaluation of care and service delivery strategies
Level of study and credit value

This is a Level 6 module, which carries 15 CATS (Credit Accumulation Transfer Scheme) points.

Where will I study and for how long?

This is a four months eLearning course with one optional study day. It has a notional study time of 150 hours, which includes time to study learning materials, attend study days where relevant, and complete assessments.

This module is delivered by blended learning, with study days to support the online course. Please note that if low numbers of students book onto this module we may cancel study days at short notice. If this is the case, students already registered will be contacted by our Finance Team and can choose to continue with the course as distance only, or be refunded.

Our study days are optional, although we advise that you attend if you possibly can, as students tell us that they learn a lot from the face to face contact with their tutor and that networking with other students is particularly useful.

The location of study days is determined by the cohort you choose to join.

How is this module assessed and what is the criteria for a pass?

Students are assessed by written assignment.

AssignmentStudents are required to submit a 3,000 word, fully referenced case study.

Criteria for a pass

The pass mark for the module is 40%. Reassessment is as per regulations in the Student Guide.

Can I take this module as part of a programme?

Successful completion of single modules can enable progression to DipHE/BSc (Hons) degree programme at Education for Health. More information on our programmes can be found here or contact our Programme Administrators at

What are the entry requirements for this module?

All applicants for The Open University validated modules must be registered or working within the UK. All applicants should have sufficient competency in the English Language to successfully study at Level 5/6.

All learning materials, teaching and assessment are conducted in the English language. Students will need to apply this to an academic environment.

It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that they have sufficient proficiency in the English Language to undertake the module or programme to which they are registered.

If you plan to undertake one of our programmes, further entry requirements are required, please refer to our admissions policy.

Further information

Module lead Hannah Waterhouse can be contacted via Customer Support on

We are committed to equality of opportunity. Our Disability Coordinator and Student Support Team provide advice and information and coordinate
arrangements for students. View our Support for Students with a Disability here.

Students have access to the eLearning materials for 18 months from the start date of their module.

How to apply

Click here to see all End of Life modules with dates.

To arrange a module in your area for 20+ students, contact our NHS Partnerships team by emailing and the NHS Partnerships Manager for your area will be in touch.