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The University of Southampton

NPCH6001 Managing Acute Changes in Health Status (Child field GEN)

Module Overview

In this module you will build on your previous learning so that you can prioritise and respond to the changing levels of support that people require when their health status changes. You will develop your ability to manage and evaluate care across healthcare settings to promote, restore and stabilise health status. This module contains a defined strand of 60 hours learning which will focus on development of your clinical assessment skills.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Critically discuss the knowledge and skills necessary to undertake a prioritised assessment of people who are experiencing an acute change in health status
  • Analyse how clinical judgement and decision making skills inform the management of nursing care
  • Evaluate the evidence base which supports nursing responses to acute changes in health status
  • Explore how the nurse may identify, prioritise and respond to risk factors that may lead to deterioration in health status
  • Apply knowledge of human anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology in the context of undertaking a bio-psycho-social assessment.


Content for ALL Fields: Clinical judgement & decision making Responding to mental and emotional distress including agitation, aggression and challenging behaviour Responding to self-harm and or suicidal ideation Recognising and responding to acute deterioration in physical health status (e.g. sepsis) Breaking significant news Sudden and / or traumatic death Ethical and legal issues in acute care: DNACPR, DOLS Managing risks to vulnerable groups with acute health care needs (e.g. Learning Disability) Human Factors: Safety culture, Debriefing Medicines Management: Safe medicine use. (e.g. drug interactions / reactions including anaphylaxis; recreational drugs; using technology to improve medicines safety; forms of prescribing including PGD) Child Specific ASSESSMENT SKILLS History taking from carers and children Physical Assessment of children over the course of childhood and early adulthood Psychosocial assessment and planning for mental wellbeing in children Pain assessment Co production of care plans for children and their carers Assessment of children’s health status using a body systems approach Assessing and planning for children’s palliative and end of life care needs Medicines management: Assessing medicine use MANAGING ACUTE CHANGES IN HEALTH Managing neonatal complex and acute care Child and adolescent mental health service provision Children and young people living with eating disorders Self harm in children and young people Managing children’s pain Management of respiratory collapse in childhood Management of sepsis and related infection and infectious diseases in childhood Acute assessment and management: Diabetic ketoacidosis in children Children’s fluid and fluid management Acute care settings: managing sudden death Promote, restore and stabilise health status in children Skills: Taking a structured history Venepuncture and cannulation Physical assessment skills Mental health assessment Therapeutic communication skills Airway skills and supporting the at risk patient BLS update Responding to physiological deterioration ECG

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

The aim of this module is to develop your knowledge and understanding of nursing assessment and interventions that enable you to meet the needs of people safely and effectively.You will evaluate care to enable management of people’s physical and mental health needs in all environments to promote, restore and stabilise health status

Independent Study96
Practical classes and workshops25
Preparation for scheduled sessions60
Clinical Practice23
Total study time250

Resources & Reading list

Spotting the sick child an educational tool for health care practitioners, to aid in recognition of serious illness in children. Dr Davies F sponsored by Department of Health (2004)CD visual format

Macqueen S Bruce EA and Gibson F (2012). The Great Ormonde Street Hospital manual of children’s nursing practices. 

Chiocca EM (2015). Advanced Pediatric assessment. 

Glasper EA, and Richardson J (2010). Textbook of children’s and young people’s nursing. 

Jarvis C (2012). Physical examination & health assessment . 

Barber P (2012). Further essentials of pharmacology for nurses. 

Thompson M, Hooper C, Laver-Bradbury C and Gale C (2012). Child and Adolescent Mental Health: Theory and Practice. 

Gormley Fleming E and Peate I (2019). Fundamentals of Children's applied Anatomy and Physiology: an essential guide for Nursing and Healthcare Students. 





MethodPercentage contribution
Exam 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Exam 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: External


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:


No additional costs associated with this module

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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