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Health Care Assistant

Our Program

Health Care Assistant

Program Description

The Health Care Assistant program delivered by Cambria College is recognized by the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry, all program graduates are eligible for registration with the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry. This program is approved by the Private Training Institution Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training.

The HCA Program is designed to provide students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to function effectively as front-line caregivers and respected members of a healthcare team. Under the direction and supervision of a health professional, graduates provide person-centered care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, social and spiritual well-being of clients. Upon completion of the program, graduates are prepared to work in a variety of practice settings including home support, assisted living, residential or complex care, special care and acute units, schools, group homes, adult day care and other community care settings.

Career Opportunities

To be eligible to work as a Health Care Assistant (HCA) in BC, applicants must be registered with BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry. For more information, visit

Health Care Assistants are prepared to work in a variety of health care facilities and community agencies. They are important and valued members of the healthcare team. HCA’s promote and maintain the health, safety, independence, comfort and well--being of individuals and families. HCA’s provide personal care assistance and services in a caring manner that recognizes and supports the unique needs, abilities and backgrounds of clients and their families. They work as members of a health care team in a variety of settings with direction and supervision from regulated health care professionals.

(Excerpt from B.C. Health Care Assistants Core Competency Profile, Government of British Columbia, March, 2014, p. 5)

The work done by HCA’s is based on a set of fundamental values, beliefs and ethical principles that are consistently reflected in all aspects of their work with clients, families, team members and others. Amongst these core values, beliefs and principles, which serve as foundations of HCA practice, are those related to:

  • Human Beings
  • Older Adults
  • Health and Healing
  • Health Care
  • Caring and Caregiving
  • The Family in Health and Healing

Admissions Requirements

  • 1. Successful completion of Grade 10. Grade 11 is strongly recommended and/or adult student status;
  • 2. A copy of Government Issued ID
  • 3. School Reports or the results of an English Placement Exam. (IELTS, CELPIP, CLBPT)
  • 4. An English Self-Declaration Form
  • 5. A Completed Application
  • 6. Criminal Record Check Completion test.
Additional Requirements for Practicum Placement

Prior to Clinical Placement for modules HCA 8 and HCA 9 which are required for Registration, the individual will be required to:

  • 1. Student Confidentiality Form
  • 2. Clear Criminal Record Check
  • 3. Complete a TB skin test
  • 4. Complete a Health Status Declaration/provide an up to date immunization record
  • 5. Food Safe Certification
  • 6. Standard First Aid/CPR
  • 7. WHMIS Certification
  • 8. Violence Prevention
  • 9. Assisting to Administer Medication Test
Admission Recommendations
  • 1. Volunteering or Experience working with an older population;
  • 2. Volunteering in a Residential Care Facility;
  • 3. Volunteering with Special Needs Population.

Course Breakdown

Course Name Minimum Course Hours
Health and Healing: Concepts for Practice 70 hours

Health 1: Interpersonal Communications

50 hours

Health 2: Lifestyle and Choices

30 hours

Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice

30 hours

Healing 1: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Challenges

115 hours

Healing 2: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Cognitive or Mental Challenges

60 hours

Healing 3: Personal Care and Assistance

120 hours

Theory/Lab Course Hours

475 hours

Practice Education Experience

Multi-level/Complex Care Facility Placement including a placement focused on dementia care

- Instructor-led Clinical Placement

210 hours

Practice Education Experience 

Home Support/Assisted Living/Group Home

- Practicum/Preceptorship

60 hours

Standard First Aid And food Safe 

24 hours

Practice Education Hours

270 hours

Total Minimum Program Hours

769 Hours

Program Duration

Total Hours 769
Work experience hours 210
Total Weeks 29

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