Comprehensive Health Assessment of the Adult Patient in Rural Healthcare

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Enhance your assessment skills in the evaluation of adult patients.  

This microcredential gives you the skills to make evidence-based decisions and develop technical and transferable skills for effective care.


Receive 20% off the price of this course, and its companion courses, Comprehensive Assessment of Paediatric and Older Patients in Rural Healthcare, when purchased together (discount applied at checkout). 


Key facts

Course category
Nursing, Patient and Aged Care
Option 1 Commences 1 July 2024 Self-paced with scheduled assessmentOnline (On demand)
40 hours including assessment
Group Bookings
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Current registration with Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA)
Digital Credential

Why this course?

If you’re a new or established nursing professional looking for a flexible online course to advance or refresh your assessment skill set, Comprehensive Health Assessment of the Adult Patient gives you the confidence to evaluate adult patients, make evidence-based clinical decisions and prioritise care and management.


Together with its companion courses (Comprehensive Assessment of the Older and Paediatric Patients in Rural Healthcare), this microcredential can be stacked into a subject for potential advanced standing in the Graduate Certificate of Rural Healthcare Practice.  


The development of this course was funded by the Australian Commonwealth Government as part of the Microcredential Pilot program and in response to nursing care needs in rural health organisations as expressed by Bendigo Health, Echuca Regional Health and the Tasmanian Health Service. 



Why study a short course at La Trobe

Industry experience while you study

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Rising demand

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Powerful Collaborations

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Course content

You’ll gain technical skills such as primary and secondary assessment, ABG analysis, detection of deterioration, ECG analysis and chest x-ray analysis. You’ll also learn transferrable skills in teamwork, leadership, communication and situational awareness so you can provide collaborative and effective nursing care to adult patients.

Topics covered:

  • Advanced Health Assessment – Primary Survey (Adult)
  • Advanced Health Assessment – Secondary Survey (Adult)
  • Basic Oxygenation and Haemodynamic Monitoring
  • Lung Sounds and Heart Sounds
  • Arterial Blood Gas Analysis
  • Pathology Interpretation
  • Chest X-Ray Interpretation
  • Basic ECG Interpretation
  • Recording Assessments and Contemporaneous Documentation
  • Identification of Risk and Recognition of Deterioration in the Adult Patient and Non-Technical Skills

On successful completion of this course, you will be awarded a digital credential and earn 5 credit points that can be accumulated with its related courses, Comprehensive Assessment of the Paediatric and Adult Patients in Rural Healthcare, into 'Comprehensive Health Assessment (NRS4002)', a core subject in the Graduate Certificate and Diploma of Rural Nursing Practice. 


This course is part of a suite of 5 related short courses offered as the Professional Certificate in Rural Nursing Practice, which is offered at  the special price of $1,485. 

You’ll learn:

After completing this microcredential, you will have developed competent skills (equivalent to AQF level 8) and be able to :

  • Conduct comprehensive health assessment of adult patients in diverse contexts 
  • Integrate assessment and diagnostic findings to make informed clinical decisions
  • Prioritise care and management and complete appropriate documentation
  • Evaluate risk and appropriately respond to the deteriorating adult patient
  • Adapt non-technical skills such as leadership, communication, teamwork, and situational awareness to provide effective collaborative nursing care. 

These skills are with in alignment with the Australian Skills Classification ‘Health & Care Skills Cluster’; within the following clusters of specialist skills:   

  • Collect, document and communicate medical information.
  • Develop, follow and ensure compliance with health care quality and safety procedures.
  • Perform medical tests, and physical examination of patients
  • Monitor and evaluate patient treatment.


Your study experience

  • Delivered via self-paced, online learning so it easily fits in with your work and life commitments, you'll be supported via Zoom drop-in sessions, email correspondence and online forums with your educator.  


The total expected time commitment for this course is up to 3 hours, including assessment.


The course must be completed within 6 months of registration, including the assessment.


Assessment for this course includes:

  • Write up of case review referring to patient data and using evidence-based resources to support discussion (1500 words)
  • For health professionals currently caring for older patients:  Primary and secondary assessment of an adult patient with either respiratory, cardiovascular or neurological dysfunction 


  • For health professionals not currently caring for older patients:  A case study will be provided with appropriate patient data and students will discuss primary and secondary assessment of this type of patient. 


Frequently Asked Questions

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Find out more about further education at La Trobe  View all FAQ

I would like information about a short course. Who can assist me?  


Phone: 1300 135 045

Can payment of a course fee be made in instalments?

No, course fees need to be paid in full before you can commence the course.

I cannot pay by credit card. Are there other payment options available? 

To arrange payment by BPAY or EFT, please contact 

I have paid the fee for a short course. When will I have access to the course?  

Access to courses is generally available two weeks in advance of the scheduled course start date, or as advised in the registration confirmation email.  Course materials are made available via our Learning Management System (LMS) for which you will be provided with your username and initial password.

Can I arrange payment with a Purchase Order?

Yes, we accept Purchase Orders. Please email to and our La Trobe Professional team will provide you with payment details and access to your course. 

I am getting an error when I try to log into my LMS account. Can you help? 

Please visit our Student IT Support contact us webpage if you require assistance.

I want to enrol multiple staff in a short course. How do I go about this? 

Contact for assistance registering multiple staff.