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Health Care Assistant


The Health Care Assistant Program is designed to provide students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to function effectively as front-line care-givers and respected members of the healthcare team. Under the direction and supervision of a health professional, graduates provide person-centred care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social well-being of clients.

Upon completion of the program, graduates are prepared to work in any level of continuing care, including: home support, assisted living, residential/complex care, special care units, other home and community care settings, and acute care.

Program Hours: The Health Care Assistant program runs Monday to Friday from 8:00 am to 3:00 pm with the exception of Clinical/practicum experiences. Students will be advised of their clinical/practicum hours once registered and attending the program.

Program Status:
Accepting applications

Program one-pager
Start Length Credentials Campus Part- or Full-time
January, May, September 28 weeks Certificate Broadway Full-time

Apply Now

Apply Now

The first step, apply early. Students who have officially applied and met all admission requirements are sent a letter of acceptance approximately four to five months in advance of the next available start date. A first payment is required to reserve a space in the program.

Online Mail In Person
If you're ready and know the program you want, apply now. Download and complete the (PDF) application/registration form and mail it to VCC Registrar's Office Visit us at one of our campus locations.

After you apply, you can check application status to see if all of the requirements have been met or to update contact information. Please use the temporary login ID and Personal Identification Number (PIN) that you used to complete your original online application.

Program Description

Program Description

Upon completion of the Health Care Assistant Program, graduates will be able to:

  • Provide person-centred care and assistance that recognizes and respects the uniqueness of each individual client.
  • Use an informed problem-solving approach to provide care and assistance that promotes the physical, psychological, social, cognitive and spiritual well-being of clients and families.
  • Provide care and assistance for clients experiencing complex health challenges.
  • Provide care and assistance for clients experiencing cognitive and/or mental health challenges.
  • Interact with other members of the healthcare team in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals.
  • Communicate clearly, accurately and in sensitive ways with clients and families within a variety of community and facility contexts.
  • Provide personal care and assistance in a safe, competent and organized manner.
  • Recognize and respond to own self-development, learning and health enhancement needs.
  • Perform the care provider role in a reflective, responsible, accountable and professional manner.

Instructional Activities, Design and Delivery Mode

The program is divided into three levels. Each level consists of theory, laboratory practice, and/or clinical experience. The theory component is delivered through discussion groups, student presentations, lectures, online activities, demonstrations and guest speakers. Students apply the theory component in the laboratory and clinical settings.

Level one (15 weeks, 21.5 credits) is taught in the classroom, laboratory, and an introductory clinical experience in a complex care facility. This level introduces a basic framework for care-giving practice in the continuing care setting. The concept of caring is the focus.

Level two (4 weeks, 6.0 credits) is taught in the classroom and laboratory. This level provides advanced skills to care for the person with dementia and/or mental illness and lab skills for care-giving in various contexts, including acute care.

Level three (9 weeks, 9.0 credits) is taught in an extensive complex care clinical and a community practicum. This level consolidates application of learning into care-giving practice.

Program Duration

The Health Care Assistant Program is twenty-eight weeks in length.

Evaluation of Student Learning

Theory courses are evaluated by written exams, assignments, and/or completion of a journal. Laboratory and clinical performance is assessed by instructor observations of students in work experience situations. All courses are evaluated consistent with the College Grading System.

Students must achieve at least a C+ in every course in order to proceed to the next level, or to graduate from the program.

Attendance of all classes and laboratory experiences is required in order to truly understand and master the theoretical and practical components behind the Health Care Assistant role. Per the BC Care Aide and Community Health Worker Registry students may not miss more than 15% of scheduled classroom, laboratory and/or clinical experiences. Where students exceed this maximum, the College may withdraw the student from the program. Additionally the BC Care Aide and Community Health Worker Registry require students to demonstrate 100% attendance of the program’s community practicum experience.


Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

General

VCC welcomes applications from Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

As Vancouver Community College is a post-secondary institution committed to educating adult learners, applicants should be 16 years of age or older or a graduate of a secondary school.

Please note that you must submit official transcripts and educational documents to support your application; unfortunately, we cannot accept photocopies or fax versions.


Program Specific

Missing prerequisites? VCC offers courses in Adult Upgrading and English as an Additional Language to help you meet your goals.

All BC Health Care Assistant program applicants are required to demonstrate English language proficiency as set by the BC Care Aide and Home Support Worker Registry. VCC will adhere to the entry requirements set out by the Registry.

  • Proof of completion of Grade 10 English or equivalent
  • Proof of meeting the minimum English language competency requirements as set by BC Care Aide and Home Support Worker Registry.
  • Completion of VCC Health Care Assistant Program's Self-Declaration form.
  • Standard First Aid (Red Cross or St. John Ambulance) including CPR level C or Health Care Provider CPR.
  • BC Food Safe Certificate Level 1.

Upon Acceptance:

  • A Criminal Record Check (CRC) is required in accordance with the Criminal Records Review Act through the BC Ministry of Justice.
  • Regulations stipulate that a properly fitted respiratory mask must be used when providing care to patients with suspected, known, or probable cases of acute respiratory infections. The respiratory mask must be a N95 respirator that is individually fitted by a trained and certified person. This individual mask fitting should be done just prior to beginning your program and is good for one year and must be performed annually. The original certificate must be presented to your program during the first week of classes. Please view online list of approved fit test service providers
  • Submission of a negative tuberculosis (TB) skin test. If the TB skin test is positive, proof of a negative TB chest x-ray is required.
  • A completed immunization history. See immunization requirements for further information
  • Immunizations in the following are strongly recommended, and may be required for practice placement in the program:
    • Diphtheria/Tetanus
    • Pertussis
    • Polio
    • Measles
    • Mumps
    • Rubella
    • Varicella (Chicken Pox)
    • Hepatitis B
    • Influenza (Flu vaccine) - required annually

    Seats are offered to applicants who have met all admission requirements, on a first-qualified, first-served basis

    Prior Learning Assessment

    Prior Learning Assessment is not available at this time.


    Recommended Characteristics:

    • Ability to work under direction and to act with initiative as a member of the health care team
    • A genuine concern for the well being of others
    • Patience and perseverance
    • Flexibility, trustworthiness, and dependability
    • Maturity
    • Ability to communicate effectively in both written and spoken English
    • High standard of personal hygiene and grooming
    • Ability to use problem-solving approach
    • Physical stamina
    • No sensitivity or allergy to latex
    • Ability to work in environments where standards may be different from one's own

    Health Requirements

    Updated immunizations strongly recommended: measles, mumps, rubella, polio, tetanus, diphtheria, hepatitis B vaccine and current influenza vaccination. Please review Important Health Requirements for the VCC School of Health Sciences.

Course Schedule

Courses Schedule

Fees and Other costs


Application Fee $35
Tuition Fee $2,453
Student Union Fee $89
College Initiative Fee $70
Student Union Health Plan Fee $146
Student Union Dental Plan Fee $146
U-Pass Fee $328
Other Costs
$21 - Graduation Fees
$96 - Campus Resource Fee
$400 - Approximate textbooks, supplies,


For book lists and prices, check Bookstore.


Fees are approximate and subject to change without notice. Students are responsible for any increase in fees if advanced payments are made. The application fee is non-refundable. Fees are refunded according to the refund policy. For further clarification, see withdrawals and refunds information page.

Info Sessions

Info Sessions

Both the 28 week Health Care Assistant and 40 week Health Care Assistant - ESL full time programs are designed to provide students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to function effectively as front-line care-givers and respected members of the healthcare team. Under the direction and supervision of a health professional, graduates provide person-centred care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social well-being of clients.

Upon completion of the program, graduates are prepared to work in any level of continuing care, including: home support, assisted living, residential/complex care, special care units, other home and community care settings, and acute care.

VCC is home to a $55-million state-of-the-art health sciences building located at the Broadway campus. Built in 2009, its classrooms, high-tech training labs, and simulated hospital wards give students realistic, hands-on experience. Sign up now to view the facilities, meet faculty, and learn about our exciting curriculum.





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Program Highlights

Program Highlights

Course Schedule

Courses Schedule

 

Term 1

(HRCA 1190) Lifestyle and Choices
course schedule schedule
1.5 credits
(HRCA 1191) Interpersonal Communications
course schedule schedule
3 credits
(HRCA 1192) Introduction to Practice
course schedule schedule
1.5 credits
(HRCA 1193) Personal Care and Assistance 1
course schedule schedule
3 credits
(HRCA 1194) Common Health Challenges
course schedule schedule
6 credits
(HRCA 1195) Health and Healing
course schedule schedule
4.5 credits
(HRCA 1196) Clinical 1
course schedule schedule
2 credits


Term 2

(HRCA 1290) Personal Care and Assistance 2
course schedule schedule
3 credits
(HRCA 1291) Cognitive or Mental Challenges
course schedule schedule
3 credits


Term 3

(HRCA 1390) Clinical 2
course schedule schedule
7 credits
(HRCA 1391) Community Practicum
course schedule schedule
2 credits course outline