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Advanced Health Assessment and Prescribing (PGCert)

Postgraduate Certificate
Typical Offer
2:2 degree View full entry requirements
3 years
Course Type
Next course starts
September 2024

About this course

Develop your knowledge of advanced health assessment, diagnosis, and independent and supplementary prescribing.

This Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) is designed for UK registered nurses, midwives or allied health practitioners (including pharmacists), to train as non-medical prescribers. If you're working towards a specialist or advanced role within clinical practice, this PGCert will advance your clinical skills.

You’ll learn how to: 

  • make clinical judgements that consider research evidence, expert opinion, the legal/ethical dimensions of practice and the views of the people in your care 
  • demonstrate a high level of autonomy in managing risk, complexity and uncertainty in your role as a non-medical prescriber 
  • undertake discrete episodes of care delivery for people with differentiated and undifferentiated conditions  
  • demonstrate the application of assessment, diagnostic, therapeutic, problem-solving and decision-making skills within your role as a non-medical prescriber 

This pathway will enable you to practice with a higher level of clinical autonomy in roles that require you to assess, diagnose and treat people.  

To access this award, you must work in a suitable clinical environment and have access to appropriate medical, and experienced Advanced Clinical Practitioner mentorship.   

Nurses and midwives are required to have an experienced prescriber from the practitioner’s own profession (or pharmacist or medical practitioner) to act as practice supervisor, as well as a middle or senior grade doctor to act as the practice assessor.  

Allied Health Professions (AHPs) are required to have a Designated Prescribing Practitioner (DPP) who will be a medical practitioner.   

Pharmacists are required to study their Prescribing module at a university which has approval to run the Prescribing for Pharmacists programme, and then bring this module into the programme via Recognition of Prior Learning.

We regularly review our courses to ensure and improve quality. This course may be revised as a result of this. Any revision will be balanced against the requirement that the student should receive the educational service expected. Find out why, when, and how we might make changes.

Our courses are regulated in England by the Office for Students (OfS).

Course lead

Dr Francine O’Malley is a senior teaching fellow at the University of Southampton 

Francine’s clinical career before joining the University in 2011 was working as an advanced nurse practitioner and non-medical prescriber in first contact care settings in primary care, walk in centres and a minor injuries unit. 

Francine completed a PhD which was focused on antibiotic prescribing by nurses in general practice and is the lead for the NMP programme and pathway lead for the MSc ACP. 

Course location

This course is based at Highfield.

Awarding body

This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.

Download the Course Description Document

The Course Description Document details your course overview, your course structure and how your course is taught and assessed.