Specialist Diploma in Palliative Care Nursing (SDPCN)

Offered by School of Health Sciences

Post-Diploma / 9 months / TGS-2021002429

Note: Jointly offered and conducted by School of Health Sciences, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, National Cancer Centre, and Dover Park Hospice. To receive an alert about the future runs for this course, please click on the INDICATE INTEREST button. Thank you. Please note that all applications for programmes will be done via STEP. Click the 'APPLY' button on this page to proceed to STEP. You are required to use your Singpass to activate your STEP account. To receive an alert about the future runs for this course, please click the 'INDICATE INTEREST' button. Thank you. STEP, the Skills Training and Enhancement Portal, is a one-stop digital platform for your training needs.
Course Information
Learning Outcomes
Course Schedule
Lesson Plan
Entry Requirements
Course Fees

Course Information

As patients face serious or life-limiting illnesses, nurses spend more time with them and their families than any other health professional. As an expert nurse in palliative care, your role ensures that the patient’s unique needs are met with compassion, dignity and quality care.

This course is developed jointly with Dover Park Hospice and National Cancer Centre.

Learning Outcomes

You will be equipped with clinical knowledge and skills in palliative care for patients with life-limiting illnesses, in particular cancer, including how to handle emergencies encountered in oncology.

You will learn all about common cancers in Singapore, including biology, screening, diagnosis, treatment and management of symptoms, and patient care.


Upcoming Apr 2024 Intake

Application Date: 2 Jan to 15 Feb 2024
Application Outcome: 29 Feb 2024
Course start date: 13 Apr 2024
Course end date: 17 Jan 2025*
(*Date may be extended if student needs to make-up for the days that he/she was absent during clinical practicum.)

Course structure and delivery mode:

• Classes: Part-time delivery mode (Wed & Sat, 8am – 5pm)
• Clinical consolidation: Full-time – a block of 2 weeks at assigned clinical areas for clinical consolidation (Mon – Fri, according to duty roster)

Ngee Ann Polytechnic reserves the right to reschedule / cancel any programme, modify the fees and amend information without prior notice.

Lesson Plan

Post-Diploma Certificate in Essential Clinical Knowledge in Palliative Care (For Nurses and Allied Healthcare Professionals) (TGS-2021002430)
Common Cancers
Introduces a broad overview of cancer biology, screening, diagnosis, treatment and clinical trials.
Pain and Symptom Management
Covers the pathophysiology, assessment and management of common symptoms in life-limiting illnesses, in particular cancer.
Palliative Care in Non-Cancer Illnesses
Covers the role of palliative care in life-limiting non-malignant illnesses, in particular end-stage organ failure.
Communication and Psychosocial Skills
Focuses on psychosocial intervention issues and strategies applicable to the oncology and palliative care nurse.
Post-Diploma Certificate in Essential Clinical Skills in Palliative Care (for Nurses only) (TGS-2021002431)
History Taking and Physical Assessment
You will learn about history taking and physical assessment of patients and how to analyse and state the clinical implications of abnormal routine lab results.
Emergencies in Oncology / Palliative Care
You will be taught what to do in oncology emergencies, and gain an appreciation of common treatment-related cancer symptoms and their management.
Clinical Nursing Skills and Complementary
You will refine your nursing skills and enhance your knowledge in caring for terminally ill patients, including an appreciation of common complementary therapies.
Clinical Consolidation
You will develop therapeutic communication and counselling skills towards oncology and palliative client.


1 Specialist Diploma
2 Post-Diploma Certificates
8 Modules


You are required to complete 2 post-diploma certificates within 2-year validity period to be awarded the Specialist Diploma qualification.

Entry Requirements

Applicants with any of the following qualifications are invited to apply for the course:
  • A local Polytechnic Diploma/ Degree in Health Sciences (Nursing) or equivalent

  • Be a Registered Nurse with valid practicing certificate from the Singapore Nursing Board (SNB)

  • Preference will be given to applicants working with patients at the end of life or palliative care settings

Successful applicants will need to undergo a compulsory medical examination and vaccinations before semester starts. Please see details and refer to instructions in the medical examination form (Click here for the medical examination form)  for submission of all the required documents.

Course Fees

Funding period for this course is from 1 Apr 2021 to 30 Sep 2024.

SkillsFuture Credit
All Singaporeans aged 25 and above can use their $500 SkillsFuture Credit from the government to pay for a wide range of approved skills-related courses. Visit the SkillsFuture Credit website to choose from the courses available on the Training Exchange course directory. The credits can be used on top of existing course fee subsidies/funding. This is only applicable for self-sponsored applicants and must be applied via the SkillsFuture Portal. More details on the SkillsFuture Credit Claims will be advised upon admission into the course.

Union Training Assistance Programme (UTAP)
NTUC members enjoy 50% unfunded course fee support for up to $250 each year (or up to $500 for NTUC members aged 40 years old and above) when you sign up for courses supported under UTAP (Union Training Assistance Programme). Please visit e2i’s website to find out more.

Skills-Based Modular Courses (SBMCs) are bite-sized part-time courses for individuals to acquire new skills or deepen relevant skills, without the need to pursue a full diploma. Refer here for course fees for SBMCs.

GST Increment in 2024
Please note that the GST rate will be revised to 9% with effect from 1 Jan 2024, as such any payable course fees will be subjected to the new GST rate adjustments in 2024. Please refer to our STEP portal for the updated fees. (Click on STEP)


  • Please refer to our FAQs for more information.
  • The fees below are determined based on prevailing funding policies and subject to review and revision.

Ngee Ann Polytechnic reserves the right to reschedule/cancel any programme, modify the fees and amend information without prior notice.

Applicants / Eligibility Fees
Full Course fee$7207.08
Singapore Citizen Aged 40 & Above$720.70
PR Sponsored by SME$750.46
Singapore Citizen Sponsored by SME$750.46
Singapore Citizen Aged Below 40$1081.06
Singapore PR$2882.83
Long-Term Visit Pass Plus$7207.08