Pharmacotherapeutics for RANS online

Centre for Remote Health

Pharmacotherapeutics for Remote Area Nurses is available in the following two delivery options:

'People from six places come together in the middle for meeting’ by Patricia ‘Pat’ Ansell Dodds: Click to find out moreWho should attend

Remote Area Nurses (RANs) or Registered Nurses who work in or are planning to work in remote and isolated practice.

About the Course
Nurses are recognised as forming the backbone of primary health care in remote areas providing a rapidly growing volume of services, especially in relation to chronic disease management.

RANs practise at an advanced level often with limited or distant medical support and are required to possess a broad knowledge base in relation to disease management, including the administration, monitoring, supply and storage of medications.

Dealing with medications is a tricky and complex exercise. The phamacotherapeutics course will assist participants to develop knowledge and skills in the use of medications, the risks associated with them, and strategies to increase the benefits and minimise the risks of treatments. It is based on the principles of Quality Use of Medicines and collaborative practice. The course will take the participant on a journey from legislation, remote context and principles of good prescribing practice, to pharmacological principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics into the practical use of medicines in the management of clinical conditions.

The course covers conditions, both chronic and acute, that are common to remote practice and challenges participants to think beyond the general scope of nursing. A practical approach to disease management is promoted, underpinned by principles of drug therapy, such as adverse reactions, drug interactions, pharmacology, medication adherence and professional and legislative issues.

Learning Outcomes
At the end of this course participants will be able to:

  • Apply knowledge of state and territory legislation and health service policies governing the possession, administration and supply of medications in remote and isolated areas
  • Select, supply and administer appropriate medication under scheduled treatment protocols integrating comprehensive assessment and best practice guidelines
  • Apply clinical reasoning skills to identify factors that impact on selecting, monitoring and individualising treatment
  • Describe the principles of pharmacology; pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, and how these principles relate to the treatment of individual patients
  • Access up-to-date evidence, best practice guidelines and recommended evidence based reference material for drug therapies
  • Engage in effective communication in a culturally respectful manner, with patients, carers and other health providers, to ensure optimum health outcomes
  • Implement strategies that maximise treatment adherence and therapeutic relationships
  • Demonstrate professional and ethical practice in the possession, administration and supply of scheduled medicines


Online Course

The online course comprises 8 online modules and is designed to be completed over a 9 week period.

Associated with the online modules are activities to provide practical application of medicine management concepts and principles, including clinical scenarios, personal reflection, online tutorials, and multiple choice quizzes. Recommended resources, references and clinical guidelines will be referred to throughout the modules and weblinks to these will be made available.

Course Review
pdf See what participants had to say about our most recent course (1.08 MB)

Registration Information

  • Pharmacotherapeutics for Remote Area Nurses is offered 3 times a year
  • You can register at any stage, however you will only gain access to the online course on the next course commencement date
  • If you do not register by the last date for registration, your registration will be for the next course


2020 Course Dates

Commencement       Last Date for Registration
Monday 13 January     Friday 17 January
Tuesday 14 April     Tuesday 17 April
Monday 31 August    Monday 4 September


Registration and Documentation
pdf Course Guide (1.18 MB)
pdf Frequently Asked Questions (276 KB)

Enrolment enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



Two-Day Workshop

The face-to-face workshop comprises a two-day intensive workshop followed by completion of written assessments. 
Guest presenters, including experienced RANs, specialist medical physicians and specialist pharmacists, provide up-to-date knowledge, expert opinion and practical solutions to challenges that patients and RANs may face in the remote setting.

This face to face workshop is currently postponed until further notice in response to COVID-19

2019 Course Dates
Thursday 7 - Friday 8 May 2020


pdf Registration Form (435 KB)

Tobias Speare

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