BSc Nursing Practice (CPD) / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
Principles and Practice of Burn Care

Course unit fact file
Unit code NURS9997C
Credit rating 20
Unit level Cont Education/Prof Developmen
Teaching period(s) Variable teaching patterns
Available as a free choice unit? No


By debating concepts that underpin health and social care provision students will develop awareness of the complexities of managing burn injury from acute admission to discharge home. This unit will be suitable for nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, psychologists, dieticians and other members of the multi-professional team as appropriate.

The curriculum will cover both child and adult aspects of burn injury. 

Application of theory into practice will be developed through the following unit content:

  • Mechanism of injury - chemical, electrical, radiation, hyper/hypo thermal:  implications for First Aid and continuing management
  • Burn Depth and TBSA:  Assessment and relationship to burn complexity.
  • Local and systemic effects of burn injury (include the metabolic and immune response to acute, major burn injury and implications for management. + Rhabdomyolysis, pathophysiology, and management)
  • Management of Inhalation Injury including Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome.
  • Pathophysiology of Burn Shock and Fluid Resuscitation.
  • Assessment and management of non-burn cutaneous injuries/specific skin conditions.
  • Acute and chronic burn pain: pathophysiology and management.
  • Managing Sepsis in major burn patients.
  • Microbiology, the influence of pathogens on burn injury and the role of the multidisciplinary team in the prevention of infection.
  • Physiotherapy: Acute and on-going intervention for long term functional optimisation. (to include ICU management)
  • Occupational Therapy: Acute and on-going intervention for long-term functional optimisation.
  • The psychology of burn injury - Pre, intra and post burn mental health: interventions and adjustment issues
  • Emergency surgical interventions. (to include escharotomy/fasciotomy)
  • Non-emergency surgical interventions: (to include Skin Grafts, Skin Substitutes, Flaps: rationale for use and principles of management
  • Burn wound healing physiology, management and dressings principles
  • Ethical issues in Burn management.
  • Burn Prevention
  • Preparing for discharge
  • The role of the burns outreach team


Facilitate the student to develop the knowledge, skill and professional values that underpin, safe, evidenced based, contemporary burns care for adult and children

Facilitate the students to develop greater understanding of the impact of a significant burn injury from a physiological, psychological and wider family perspective

Analyse the complex need of those with a burn injury within the context of current healthcare provision and evidence-based practice

Analyse current international, national and local policy, and clinical guidelines, protocol for care delivery, evidence-based practice and the influence in the assessment, treatment and management of burn injury

Teaching and learning methods

This unit will run over a period of 12 weeks and will include 7 study days.

The following are mandatory as linking of skills and theory is essential to producing competent learners.

Knowledge and understanding

Systematically assess, plan, implement and critically analyse the care of an individual with a burn injury.

Critically analyse the main physiological and functional concepts involved in burn injury

Critically analyse the psychosocial impact of burn injury, including the potential for PTSD, positive and negative adjustment post burn injury and the role of loss and grief on the individual adult/child and their significant others.

Critically analyse the role of patient education, ethics and the role of the MDT and their application in the immediate and long-term management of a burn injured adult/child.

Demonstrate knowledge of the signs and patterns of self-harm and abuse in burn injury and critically analyse their aetiology, influences and implications for management.

Intellectual skills

Provide a rationale for clinical decision-making following critical evaluation of the evidence relating to the care and support required at each stage of the patient care pathway.

Critically analyse current clinical practice and develop suggestions,underpinned by evidence, for how practice can be enhanced.

Practical skills

Critically analyse strategies used for the assessment, management and evaluation of care provided to patients with a burn injury to enhance clinical practice.

Communicate developments in practice to the multidisciplinary team

Transferable skills and personal qualities

Develop information technology skills to support lifelong learning.

Participate in identification of individual learning needs and develop strategies to meet those needs.

Participate in collaborative learning and peer support.

Analyse your role in leading and developing practice in relation to the care of patients with a burn injury

Promote independent learning through critically appraising the evidence that supports practice.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment practical exam 15
Lectures 42
Tutorials 2
Independent study hours
Independent study 141

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Donna Souter Unit coordinator

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