MPharm Pharmacy with a Foundation Year

Year of entry: 2022

Course unit details:
The Public (Year 2): Infectious Disease & Prophylaxis/Treatment in Public Health

Course unit fact file
Unit code PHAR20400
Credit rating 20
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Full year
Offered by Pharmacy
Available as a free choice unit? No


By the end of the course the student will be able to:


  • Describe how pathogens cause disease
  • Understand how pathogens overcome the innate host defence
  • Understand basic concepts of epidemiology:  how infections are propagated.
  • Describe the fundamentals of vaccination and named examples of successful vaccination campaigns
  • Be aware of and understand  recent vaccine controversies
  • Describe the UK routine childhood immunisation schedule and give examples of travel vaccination programmes in the UK.
  • Understand and describe the pathogenicity and prevention of the common cold and influenza
  • Understand and describe the epidemiology of norovirus in the community and in hospitals.
  • Understand and describe the pathogenicity of selected blood-borne viruses
  • Understand the pathogenicity, epidemiology and management of some common sexually transmitted infections in the UK.
  • Understand hypersensitivity reactions and the concept of allergy and its management
  • Describe how the immune system might cause disease.
  • Understand the concepts and be able to give named examples of antimicrobial chemotherapy
  • Critically analyse data relevant to community acquired infections and vaccination and recommend appropriate treatments/outcomes
  • Discuss these recommendations with other members of the healthcare team (infection control staff and medics) in a workshop environment
  • To understand why we need intervention in oral health
  • Be able to describe the range and mode of action of a variety of oral antimicrobials
  • Be able to give your patients appropriate advice regarding the effective use of oral antimicrobials
  • Understand the aetiology and ecology of dental caries and periodontal disease



Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
The Medicine (Year 1) PHAR10100 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
The Pharmacist (Year 1) PHAR10200 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
The Public (Year 1): Public Health Microbiology PHAR10400 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Integrated Professional Practice (Part 1) PHAR10500 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Integrated Professional Practice Part 2 PHAR10600 Pre-Requisite Compulsory


To provide an understanding of:

  • The concept of the public as a target for infectious disease
  • The epidemiology of infectious disease
  • Interaction of pathogens with the host and the concept of the host defence.
  • Successful infectious disease management in clinical practice: vaccination and appropriate antimicrobial use.

Assessment methods

Semester 1

Consolidated examination: (25% contribution to the unit mark). 5 credits

Essay: (25% contribution to the unit mark). 5 credits

Semester 2

Consolidated examination: (25% contribution to the unit mark). 5 credits

Leaflet (25% contribution to the unit mark). 5 credits


The consolidated exams will contain questions from all three units (The Medicine, The Public and The Patient) contributing equally. Students must achieve a minimum of 40% over both semesters in the Public sections of the consolidated exam.

 Two component marks will be reported to the Examination Board as below.  In order to pass this module you will need at least 40% in each of the following components:

Component 1: Semester 1 and semester 2 consolidated exams contribute 50% to the overall mark for the unit.  Exam marks refers to marks received for “The Public” part of the consolidated exam. Students must achieve a minimum of 40% over both semesters in the Public sections of the consolidated exam.

Component 2: Marks for the essay and leaflet assignments will be combined from both semesters to generate a single component mark which contributes 50% of the total mark for this unit.



Feedback methods

Students will receive instant feedback during clicker sessions in lectures.

Students will receive feedback on their coursework (essay and leaflet)

Recommended reading

Hugo and Russell’s Pharmaceutical Microbiology (eighth edition)

Chapters 7 and 14.

Oral Microbiology.  Philip D Marsh and Michael V Martin (fifth edition)

Chapters 6 and 8.


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
eAssessment 15
Lectures 49
Tutorials 2
Work based learning 4
Independent study hours
Independent study 210

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Andrew McBain Unit coordinator
Ruth Ledder Unit coordinator

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