E-Learning Programme on Palliative Care: Assessment & Management of Common Symptoms

This e-learning programme has been developed by clinicians and academics in Marymount University Hospital & Hospice and University College Cork. The development of the programme was supported by the All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care and by a grant from the Irish Hospice Foundation.

Assessment & Management of Common Symptoms in Palliative Care

Part of the philosophy of palliative care is to focus on the improvement of the “quality of life of patients & their families facing the problem associated with life threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual.” (WHO National cancer control programmes :policies & managerial guidelines 2nd ed. Geneva: WHO; 2002)

Physical symptoms can be debilitating and affect quality of life. One of the key principles of palliative care is the provision “of relief from pain and other distressing symptoms.” (ibid)

Target Audience

This e-learning programme is relevant to healthcare professionals who care for patients with palliative care needs (Nurses, Hospital Doctors, GP’s, Pharmacists, Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists)


To develop the healthcare professionals knowledge on the assessment and management of the more common symptoms in palliative care.

Programme Content

There are eight sections to the e-learning programme.

Section 1: Introduction to palliative care

Section 2: Symptom assessment & management

Section 3: Pain

Section 4: Dyspnoea

Section 5: Constipation

Section 6: Anorexia, nausea & vomiting

Section 7: Oral problems

Section 8: Fatigue

Interactive Programme

This e-leaning programme  consists of eight sections that vary in length to complete. The programme should be undertaken in chronological order as the sections build on each other and should take approximately 16 hours in total to complete. A module guide is included to assist  with learning. There are a combination of PowerPoint presentations with voiceovers, video clips, case studies, links to other resources, quizzes and reference lists.


The accredited version of the e-learning programme requires the satisfactory completion of an MCQ assessment.  The programme has 15 Continuing Education Units from An Bord Altranais agus Cnáimhseachais na hEireann and 15 Continuing Professional Development Points from the Irish College of General Practice.

Programme Fee

The unaccredited programme is available to complete for free however, the fee for the accredited programme is €150. Payment can be made using a Paypal option. You do not need to have a Paypal account to use the facility. Alternatively payment can be made via cheque or invoice and forwarded to the Education Centre, Marymount University Hospital & Hospice.

Accessing the Programme

The programme can be accessed via the All Ireland Institute of Hospice & Palliative Care Learning Platform

Technical Issues

If there are any technical issues contact:

All Ireland Institute of Hospice & Palliative Care on 01 491 2948 or

For any other queries please contact;

Education Administrator | Marymount University Hospital & Hospice | Tel:  021 4869100 | Email: