The University of Southampton

MEDI3049 Medicine & Elderly Care

Module Overview

This module provides the students with the opportunity to gain experience of history taking and clinical examination in general medicine and elderly care in the ward and outpatient clinic environment

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• Gain competency in the clinical skills of history taking and physical examination • Integrate clinical experience with knowledge from the biological and social sciences • Work in an environment where co-operation between several health care professions is a routine part of patient care • Gain a balanced view of health needs in old age • improve communication skills with patients, their families and other health care professionals • Understand how concepts of health and lifestyle can contribute to well-being and to appreciate the effect of ill health on the patients, their families, carers and other health professionals During this module you will observe immediate care being provided in medical emergencies. Whilst you will not be responsible for providing that care, you will be expected to note and reflect on what contributes to successful outcomes and be prepared to discuss this with your clinical tutor. The learning outcomes below map directly to one or more of the Programme learning outcomes [as indicated in square brackets] which in turn are taken from the GMC’s Tomorrow’s Doctors (2009).

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Recognise common clinical disorders and the effects of disease on patients and their families and/or carers [1.2a, 1.2b, 1.2c, 1.2d, 1.2e, 1.2f, 1.2g]
  • Justify the selection of appropriate investigations for common clinical cases [1.1c]
  • Assess and recognise the severity of a clinical presentation and a need to immediate emergency care [2.4a]
  • Demonstrate an understanding of different team roles in multi-professional settings
  • Develop insight into your learning needs in the professional workplace and recognise the need for support and guidance in managing challenging situations; and reflect on your own learning style and how it may need to be adapted to the clinical environment [3.2a, 3.2b, 3.2e, 3.4a, 3.4i]
  • Show awareness of a wide variety of ways in which you learn in the workplace, often not defined by the curriculum, and which includes role models [3.3a, 2.3h]
  • Demonstrate awareness of professional responsibility both to patients and to members of the multi-professional team and to student colleagues and reflect on how poor performance or poor professional behaviour should be addressed [3.1d, 3.1f, 3.3c, 3.3d, 3.4j]
  • Demonstrate concern for the interests and dignity of patients with sensitivity to the balance between prolongation of life and quality of life, and also to values and cultures which may differ from your own [3.1b, 3.1d, 3.1e, 3.1f, 3.4a]
  • Take responsibility for your own learning and your continuing professional development [3.2b]
  • Show an understanding of the duties of confidentiality in your contact with colleagues and patients [2.7c, 3.1c, 3.4c]
  • Recognise characteristic presentations of disease in the older patient and the impact of social, economic and cultural factors on health, illness and recovery [1.3a, 1.3b, 1.3c, 1.3d, 1.3e]
  • Describe the scientific and physiological framework underlying the common disorders and the rationale for treatment [1.1b, 1.1e]
  • Make accurate observations of clinical phenomena [1.1g]
  • Establish a relationship with a patient, explore and acknowledge their concerns [2.3a,2.1b]
  • Take a focused history, perform a competent examination, integrate the information you have gained to formulate a basic differential diagnosis and present the case in oral and written formats [2.1a, 2.1c, 2.1d, 2.2a, 2.2b, 2.2e]
  • Take a medication history, including details of any complementary or alternative therapies the patient is using, and begin to consider the role of medication on the presentation and management of patients [2.5a, 2.5g, 2.5h]
  • Communicate with patients and relatives who have sensory and/or cognitive impairment. [2.1b, 2.1e, 2.1f,2.1g, 2.3a, 2.3b, 2.3c, 2.3d, 2.3e, 2.3f, 2.3g, 2.7c]
  • Demonstrate competency in performing stipulated clinical skills as per the student portfolio requirements [2.6a,2.6b,2.6c]


Teaching in this module consists of a series of clinical placements with clinical tutors in Medicine and Elderly Care, with additional lectures seminars and workshops. The combined clinical teaching covers the topics outlined below. This list is not exhaustive: you might not see patients with all of these conditions and you might see patients with other interesting conditions. Cardiovascular • Ischaemic heart disease • Cardiac Failure • Arrhythmias • ECG interpretation • Valvular heart disease Respiratory • Asthma • Chronic Obstructive Airways Disease • Pneumonia • Pulmonary Embolus • Pneumothorax • Lung Cancer Gastrointestinal • GI haemorrhage • Inflammatory Bowel Disease • GI cancer • Hepatitis • Liver failure • Cirrhosis • Jaundice • Coeliac disease • Irritable bowel syndrome • Anaemia General • Rehabilitation • Ethical issues CNS • Stroke • Coma • Epilepsy • Meningitis • UMN/LMN lesions • Parkinson’s Disease • Acute Confusion (delirium) • Dementia Endocrine/Diabetes • Diabetic Ketoacidosis • Hypoglycaemia • Hyperthyroidism • Hypothyroidism • Cushing’s Syndrome • Pituitary Disease • Addison’s Disease Renal • Acute Renal failure • Chronic Renal failure • Hypertension • Nephrotic Syndrome Rheumatology • Osteoarthritis • Rheumatoid arthritis • Osteoporosis Geriatric Syndromes • Falls • Incontinence • Frailty/Sarcopaenia Renal Acute Renal failure Chronic Renal failure Hypertension Nephrotic Syndrome Rheumatology Osteoarthritis Rheumatoid arthritis Osteoporosis Geriatric Syndromes Falls Incontinence Frailty/Sarcopaenia

Special Features

Reasonable adjustment will be made for students who have special considerations and will be assessed and implemented on an individual basis

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The module will be taught through a range of learning and teaching strategies which will include: • Patient based learning • Tutor led tutorials • Practical sessions • Guided self-study • Problem solving scenarios • Group work • Lectures • Portfolios • eLearning • Reflection

Independent Study75
Total study time375

Resources & Reading list

Bond J and Coleman P (2007). Ageing in Society: An Introduction to Social Gerontology. 

Graham, D. (2009). Macleod’s Clinical examination. 

Longmore, J.M et al (2014). Oxford Handbook of Clinical Medicine. 

Kumar P, Clark M, editors (2012). Clinical medicine. 

Roper, T.A (2014). Clinical skills. 


patient stories / experience of health related conditions.

Objective information about alcohol.

Gosney MA et al. (2012). Oxford Desk Reference Geriatric Medicine. 

Lecture Notes: Elderly Care Medicine.


Warrell, D.A et al (2010). Oxford Textbook of Medicine,. 

Hampton, J. (2013). The ECG made easy. 

Gray, H H; Dawkins, K D; Morgan, J. M.; Simpson, I. A. (2008). Lecture notes on Cardiology. 

How to Read a Paper: The Basics of Evidence based Medicine.


Assessment Strategy

Students’ learning will be assessed in the following ways in this module by the clinical tutor: • Satisfactory attendance Students must attend a minimum of 6 out of the 8 weeks of the attachment. Absence of > 2 weeks will require a supplementary period of study to be undertaken. • Professional behaviour • Evaluation of clinical and overall performance relative to learning outcomes • Formal feedback from all tutors • The student log book recording the breadth of activity and experience during the module including completion of clinical skills training • 2 formative Assessments of Clinical Competence (ACC) based on a focussed observed history and examination with feedback and suggestions for improvement. The second of these will be carried out be a clinical tutor. The first can be carried out by any member of the medical team o Two short (< 500 words) pieces of reflective writing on 1) their performance in the practice ACC, the feedback they received and how this will impact their future performance, and 2) their experience and understanding of different team roles in multi-professional settings


MethodPercentage contribution
Assessments of Clinical Competence 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Assessments of Clinical Competence %
Attendance or performance %

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Travel Costs for placements

Students pay £100 per year to the Faculty to cover the costs of travel to and from placements throughout the academic year

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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