Nursing & Midwifery - Care of the Surgical Patient

Care of the Surgical Patient PgCert Nursing and midwifery
Why study nursing and midwifery at RCSI Dublin?
Educating future leaders in healthcare delivery and related research is at the core of the mission of the RCSI School of Nursing & Midwifery. The School aims to develop caring, reflective nursing and midwifery practitioners who can seek out and use research-based knowledge to improve patient care.

We are committed to providing students with outcome-focused curricula shaped by innovative teaching and learning practices. We have a long association with postgraduate nursing and midwifery education and are the largest such school in Ireland.

We aspire to become recognised leaders in the provision of health sciences education, both nationally and internationally. The suite of programmes we offer nurses and midwives in pursuit of postgraduate education is continually evolving in response to the needs within the healthcare service.

Our goal is to empower nurses and midwives to be able to demonstrate the difference they make to practice, and in doing so, to be able to respond accordingly to the leadership and professional challenges that they face every day.

Course details
Continuing professional development is a key professional requirement for nurses and post graduate academic qualifications have been linked to positive patient outcomes through improved communication, expanded knowledge and stronger critical thinking skills. Though many postgraduate learning opportunities exist for nurses across a large number of clinical areas, limited opportunities exist for those working in the operating department (outside of larger Band 1 hospitals) and none exist which prepare the nurse to care for the pre and post-operative surgical patient in a ward setting at an enhanced level.

This six-month part-time fully-accredited Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing (Care of the Surgical Patient) aims to address this gap. This exciting and clinically relevant programme offers participants the opportunity to consolidate and expand their knowledge in the care of the surgical patient, thus enhancing care, whilst at the same time allowing for flexibility within the workforce. The programme is designed in such a way as to allow students to choose the path most suited to their clinical practice: Pre and Postoperative Care; or Care in the Perioperative setting. The programme complements RCSI's focus on surgical practice and support the provision of efficient, safe, and advanced high-quality healthcare, which enables people to live long and healthy lives.

The programme provides a foundation for those wishing to progress further to the Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing (Care of the Surgical Patient) during which research, leadership and critical analysis skills acquired will further the students' skills as a member of the interdisciplinary team.

Learning outcomes
This programme aims to:
• ensure safe and effective care in the surgical setting

• develop the participants professional knowledge base, practical skills and understanding required by nurses working in a surgical setting, enhancing their capacity to care in this area

• provide a platform for achieving greater efficiencies in applying healthcare discoveries to clinical practice.

Subjects taught

The programme modules are:
Module name Credits Assessment method
Principles of Surgical Practice 10 Assignment

Strand A: Anaesthetic and Recovery Room Nursing 10 Oral presentation and assignment

Strand A:Nursing Care of the Patient in the Operating Room 10 Poster and assignment

Strand B:Enhanced Nursing Care of the Preoperative Patient 10 Poster and assignment

Strand B: Enhanced Nursing Care of the Preoperative Patient 10 Oral presentation and assignment

Entry requirements

Entry requirements
To be eligible for the programme you must:
• Be a registered nurse or midwife on the active register with the Nursing & Midwifery Board of Ireland, or the relevant regulatory body in your country of practice before commencing the programme.
• Hold a level 8 degree* or international equivalent, demonstrated through a defined recognition of prior learning (RPL) process.
• Meet the English Language Requirements: IELTS English proficiency test score of 6.5 or the equivalent score on another standardised test. You are exempt if you completed your undergraduate/postgraduate studies full-time in the medium of the English language (three or more years, cumulatively).

*Please note: If you do not hold a level 8 qualification, you may still be eligible to join the programme through our pathway programme. Please contact us for further information on this route.


6 months
Delivery: Part-time

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Certificate

  • Attendance type

    Part time

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