Note: Support from Marie Curie’s ‘Research to Impact’ funding means that some free places on this course are currently available  – contact us for details (see contact button on menu bar)

This course is designed to help healthcare professionals to provide good end-of-life care for PDoC patients, especially around the discontinuation of life-sustaining treatments such as clinically-assisted nutrition and hydration. It also provides guidance for the support of families, and of staff. The course is relevant to anyone working in hospices, hospitals, neuro-rehabilitation centres or care homes.

Delivery: entirely online

Study time: Core course take around 3 hours. Designed to study at your own pace, at times that suit you.

Note: For students seeking additional, advanced, learning there are clearly indicated, optional, CPD portfolio exercises.

Assessment: self-assessment quizzes & reflection; auto-generated CPD certificate on completion.

Cost: £40 (Provides access to course materials for 8 weeks)

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • outline key principles of end-of-life care and recognise when it is important to discuss palliative options alongside decisions about life-sustaining treatment
  • identify clinical issues in the care of PDoC patients following the discontinuation of Clinically Assisted Nutrition and Hydration [CANH]
  • recognise the need to develop an appropriate palliative care plan and know where to find relevant clinical guidelines
  • reflect on specific ethical, clinical, social and practical concerns in relation to CANH
  • identify some of the issues that might impact on you personally, or for other team member, and reflect on ways of supporting each other
  • summarise common ideas about how a patient might die if CANH is discontinued and identify key information and support needs (for yourself, your colleagues and for families)
  • outline research findings into family experiences of witnessing the dying process following such treatment being discontinued
  • provide relevant information to families and point to key resources for family and friends.

Optional CPD exercises for advanced learning additional to the core corse

There are optional CPD exercises for learners who want additional learning and have more time to study. These exercises offer the opportunity to:

  • develop a draft palliative care plan in line with PDoC guidelines about clinical management (Unit 2.3);
  • map out a strategy to enhance staff support in your organisation around end-of-life care  (Unit 3.4);
  • review a research article about family concerns and devise a plan to enhance family support (Unit 4.1);
  • focus on legal and best interests issues around the timing of treatment withdrawal (Unit 4.8);
  • engage in depth with legal and philosophical debates about ethics, human rights and dignity (Unit 4.9).
How to purchase
  • Individuals: use the ‘buy now’ button above & set up your student account (The ‘username’ you choose will display in learner chat). If your organisation has given you a coupon code this is how you use that.
  • Organisations can purchase all round access to courses and multiple places at reduced rates, contact us for details.

Free places for family members: these courses are designed for healthcare professionals but some families/friends of PDoC patients have found them useful. We offer free places to anyone with a loved one in PDoC – just email Jenny and she will sort out access (see ‘Contact’  button).

View other course outlines

If you’d like to know more about the ‘end-of-life’ care course you can see the course menu, and sample some units here: