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NU7306 - Promoting Health and Wellbeing with the Older People (10 ECTS)

Learning Outcomes

Following completion of this module the student should be able to:

Unit 1

  • Distinguish between normal and age related changes and pathology and discuss their influence on the older person’s functional ability
  • Outline and discuss laboratory values when applied to the older person
  • Describe the pharmo-kinetic and pharmo-dynamic changes that occur in older age, and the role and responsibility of the gerontological nurse in relation to medication management
  • Discuss the concept of frailty and geriatric syndromes and their implications for all stakeholders
  • Differentiate and describe dementia, delirium and depression and the implications for the older person

Unit 2

  • Critically discuss the role and function of the multi disciplinary team in promoting and maximising quality of life for the older person in a variety of care settings
  • Explain the complexities of identifying elder abuse, and its assessment and management
  • Demonstrate an ability to manage risk and promotion of safety

Unit 3

  • Outline and discuss the multidimensional nature of health promotion
  • Demonstrate an awareness of sexuality and the need to support the expression of sexuality by the older person
  • Critically discuss the experiences and support needs of carers
  • Outline and discuss community nursing trends and the implications for the older adult
  • Critically discuss the role of technology in promoting independent living for older adults
  • Discuss the range of different types of activities to support active living and social connectedness

Module Learning Aims & Rationale

This module was developed to facilitate gerontological nurses to further develop the specialist knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to care for the older person in a holistic manner. Care for/with the older person traverses multiple contexts and disciplines and gerontological nursing is a speciality at the core of comprehensive care delivery. Care of the older person is a complex and dynamic area of nursing and this module will enable students to advance gerontological nurses’ scientific foundation for practice whilst nurturing and sustaining fundamental values and skills (NCPDNM, ABA, 2009).


  • To further develop students’ knowledge of age related physiological changes, laboratory values and pharmacological issues relevant to the older person
  • To increase students’ knowledge of multi morbidity, the concept of frailty and geriatric syndromes in later life
  • To promote students’ understanding of the role of the multi disciplinary team in promoting safety for the older person
  • To further develop awareness of health and wellness in later life

Recommended Reading List

Indicative Resources

  • An Bord Altranais (2009) Professional Guidance for Nurses Working with Older People. Dublin. An Bord Altranais
  • Drennan, J. Lafferty, A. Treacy, M. Fealy, G. Phelan, et al (2012) Older People in Residential Care Settings. Results of a National Survey of Staff-Resident Interactions and Conflicts. NCPOP. University College Dublin
  • Farley, A. McLaffery, E. Hendry, C. (2011) The physiological effects of ageing: implications for nursing practice. Wiley Blackwell. Oxford
  • Health Service Executive (2012) National Clinical Programme for Older People. Model of Care for Specialist Geriatric Services. Health Service Executive, Dublin
  • Hindle. A. Coates. A. (2011) Nursing care of older people. Oxford University Press. Oxford
  • McCormack, B. (2005) Determining an appropriate framework for assessing older peoples need…….Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety. Belfast
  • National Council for the Professional Development of Nursing and Midwifery (2007) Clinical Nurse Specialist and Advanced Nurse Practitioner Roles in Older Persons Nursing. National Council for the Professional Development of Nursing and Midwifery. Dublin
  • Phelan, A. McCormack, B. (2013) Exploring Nursing Expertise in Residential Care for Older
  • People in Ireland. Nursing Homes Ireland, All Ireland Gerontological Nurses Association, University College Dublin, University of Ulster
  • Smith, C. (2010) Researching older people’s nursing: the gap between theory and practice. Palgrave Macmillan. Basingstoke
  • Tolson, D. Booth, J. Schofield, I. (2011) Evidence informed nursing with older people. Wiley-Blackwell. Oxford

*Other readings will be provided by individual lecturers.