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OPT036 - Independent Prescribing

This module aims to equip you with the knowledge and skills to provide a high standard of independent prescribing.

This module concentrates on independent prescribing and includes treatments for common systemic conditions and ocular side effects of systemic drugs.

In total, there are two contact days which include a teaching day after the OPT035 online test in Cardiff and an online test at the end of the module held at Cardiff University.

Along with OPT034 and OPT035, this module is accredited by the General Optical Council for the Independent Prescribing Qualification. This module can only be studied as part of the full Postgraduate Certificate in Therapeutic Prescribing, but credits from that award may be able to be applied to the MSc or postgraduate diploma in Clinical Optometry.

Start dateMarch
Credits20 credits - CET points available
PrerequisitesOPT034 and OPT035
Module tutorsAngela Whitaker
Tuition fees (2020/21)£1240 - UK and EU students
£2310 - Students from outside the EU
Module codeOPT036

Learning objectives

On successful completion of the module you should be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of your role as an independent prescriber, an awareness of the limitations of your clinical experience and an ability to work within the limits of your professional competence
  • demonstrate an understanding of the public health issues related to medicines use
  • demonstrate an understanding of the legal, ethical and professional framework for accountability and responsibility in relation to prescribing
  • demonstrate an understanding of working within clinical governance frameworks that include audit of prescribing practice and personal development
  • take a comprehensive medical history and examine the eye using agreed instrumentation and clinical techniques.
  • demonstrate a knowledge of the pathophysiology, clinical features and natural course of the conditions being treated
  • develop and document a clinical management plan within the context of a prescribing partnership
  • critically evaluate sources of information, advice and decision support in prescribing practice, taking into account current evidence-based practice
  • demonstrate an understanding of how to monitor the response to treatment, to review both the working and the differential diagnosis, and to modify treatment or refer / consult / seek guidance as appropriate
  • demonstrate an understanding of the main concepts that are important in relation to communication and interaction with other health care professionals pertinent to the management of selected abnormal ocular conditions and eye diseases.
  • demonstrate a knowledge of the principles of the Medicines Act and the principles of access to medicines, including the prescribing of medicines for human use
  • demonstrate an understanding of how to prescribe safely, appropriately and cost effectively
  • demonstrate knowledge of a shared approach to decision making by assessing patients’ need for medicines, taking account of their preference
  • rank potential treatment options and to formulate and review a management plan for people with eye disease, evidencing an understanding of the diverse influences on prescribing decisions including local and national guidance, clinical effectiveness, general health, cost, safety concerns, side effects and patient choice
  • explain and justify clinical decisions to patients and colleagues.

How the module will be delivered

This module will be delivered through online lectures, a webinar, case based learning, practical sessions, and a series of online articles.

This module is studied in Semester 2. This module includes an online teaching day towards the beginning of the module in which you will take part in interactive teaching sessions. Studies continue with a series of distance learning articles and lectures delivered on Learning Central.

Interactive case discussions are presented in a webinar and at the contact teaching day, and formative assignments are offered to guide and enhance your learning. In total there are two contact days which include the online teaching day after the OPT035 examination and an online examination at the end of the module.

All contact days and the webinar are mandatory activities.

Skills that will be practised and developed

Academic skills

  • Advance your own knowledge and understanding
  • Collate and synthesise information from several resources to improve learning
  • Write concisely and clearly for the academic and clinical community
  • Interpret data

Generic skills

  • Manage projects and time
  • Work independently
  • Use a range of IT software packages and online resources
  • Problem solving

Syllabus content

  • Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of systemically administered medicines
  • Systemic conditions and their relevance to eye disease management as an independent prescriber
  • Legal and ethical aspects of the professional autonomy of an independent prescriber
  • Evidence-based practice and clinical governance in relation to prescribing
  • Local and national policies impacting on prescribing practice
  • Pain management
  • Laboratory investigations in relation to management of acute eye conditions

How the module will be assessed

Formative assessment

Formative activities are presented online, at the webinar, and at the online teaching days.

Summative assessment

  • Exam (65%): There will be an exam at the end of term.
  • Case report (35%): Students will submit a case report on the assessment, management and treatment of a patient with an anterior eye condition.