Health Care Assistant
The Health Care Assistant Program will support you in developing the confidence, knowledge and skills required to provide safe care and contribute to the physical, emotional and social well-being of clients in a variety of healthcare settings.
Learn more about the fully funded with guaranteed work placement, Health Career Access Program, offered by Interior Health. Please reach out to Sarah Lechthaler for details.
To express your interest to Interior Health, please email your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blended Online and In-Person Training
Complete theory courses either online or in-person! Your choice to study the theory portion from your home or in-person on the Trail campus. Then join three in-person workshops to complete the lab skills course. Selkirk College has flexible study options for the HCA program. We want to help you make it work. Contact Admissions for further details.
The HCA program is 26 weeks in total. During the first 16 weeks, students complete theory classes (online or in-person). Then in-person lab courses on the Trail campus, followed by completion of 270 hours of practice in residential and community care settings during the final ten weeks of the program.
As a graduate, you will be a respected member of the health care team and work under the direction and supervision of a health professional.
The HCA Program delivered by Selkirk College has been granted a full, five-year recognition by the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry. Graduates of the program are eligible for registration with the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry.
Take This Program If You Are
- Genuinely interested in people
- Comfortable dealing with difficult situations
- Easily adaptable to diversity
- A good communicator
- Self-motivated and responsible
Career Options Include
- Adult Day Care
- Assisted Living
- Community Health Workers
- Complex Care
- Front-Line Care Providers
- Home Support
- Residential Care Attendants
- Special Care Units
Special Costs and Travel
Students are required to have uniforms, and footwear that comply to Work Safe BC standards. In addition, students must be prepared to travel to clinical practice agencies. Access to a reliable vehicle is necessary. Students are required to possess a valid BC driver’s license by the start of HCA 107.
Clinical and practicum placements are arranged on the basis of student learning needs and available learning experiences. It is not possible to comply with the personal and travel requirements of individual students.
High School Dual Credit Opportunity
Take the HCA program in your Grade 12 year starting at Selkirk College for our Winter intake. FREE TUITION - depending on school district. For more information reach out to your high school counsellor or our Recruitment Team.
Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:
- provide person-centered 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 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 health care 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.
- English at the grade 10 level with a minimum of 67% (any two (2) approved English 10 courses as required by the BC K-12 2018 curriculum) or equivalent. https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/english-language-arts
- Applicants for whom English is a second language are required to demonstrate proficiency in English as outlined by the BC Care Aide and Community Health Worker Registry. Standardized proficiency assessments and required scores in all four language skills areas (speaking, listening, reading and writing) are outlined at: http://www.cachwr.bc.ca/Educators.aspx. And within the pdf titled HCA Program Entry – English Language Competency Requirements.
- Applicants are required to complete the College Readiness Tool (CRT) in reading, writing and mathematics.
- Three personal references and an applicant information questionnaire serve to provide evidence of the personal characteristics required by the program. Such references should be supplied by counsellors, employers, instructors or supervisors. References from friends and relatives are not acceptable for this purpose.
- Applicants must complete a Criminal Record Check (CRC) through the Ministry of Justice. The School will not seek practice placements for students whose CRC is adjudicated and deemed unacceptable for working with vulnerable clients.
- Individuals entering the HCA program are advised that they must meet the requirements for immunization established for health care workers by the B.C. Ministry of Health prior to entering clinical practice settings.
- Students require basic computer skills including knowledge of the internet, accessing online information, email, and word processing.
- Applicants are required to have current certification in CPR - Basic Life Support (BLS), and FoodSafe.
Promotion to Semester 2 requires satisfactory completion of all theory and lab courses in Semester 1 with a “C” or greater and a minimum GPA of 2.0.
HCA101 - Health & Healing: Concepts for Practice
HCA 101Health and Healing: Concepts for Practice provides students with the opportunity to develop a theoretical framework for practice. Students will be introduced to the philosophical values and theoretical understanding that provide a foundation for competent practice as HCA. The course focuses on concepts of caring and person-centered care; basic human needs and human development; family, culture and diversity as they relate to health and healing. Students will also be introduced to a problem-solving model that will be critical to their practice.
HCA102 - Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice
HCA 102 Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice provides an introduction to the role of the HCA within the British Columbia Health care system. Students will be introduced to the healthcare team and the roles and functions of HCA within the team. Students will also have opportunities to develop self-reflective skills required for competent practice and will be introduced to effective job-finding approaches.
HCA103 - Health 1: Interpersonal Communications
HCA 103 Health I: Interpersonal Communication focuses on the development of self-awareness, increased understanding of others and development of effective interpersonal communication skills that can be used in a variety of care giving contexts. Students will be encouraged to become more aware of the impact of their own communication choices and patterns. They will have opportunity to develop and use communication techniques that demonstrate personal awareness, respect and active listening skills.
HCA104 - Health 2: Lifestyle and Choices
HCA 104 Health 2 - Lifestyle and Choices introduces students to a holistic concept of health and the components of a health-enhancing lifestyle. Students will be invited to reflect on their own experience of health, recognizing challenges and resources that can impact lifestyle choices. Students will be introduced to a model that can be applied in other courses to understand the multi-faceted aspects of health and healing.
HCA105 - Healing 1: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Challenges
HCA 105 Healing 1 - Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Challenges introduces students to the normal structure and function of the human body and normal bodily changes associated with aging. Students will explore common challenges to health and healing in relation to each body system. Students will also be encouraged to explore person-centered practice as it relates to the common challenges to health and, in particular, to end-of-life care.
HCA106 - Healing 2: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Cognitive or Mental Challenges
HCA 106 Healing 2 - Caring for Individuals Experiencing Cognitive or Mental Health Challenges builds on content from other courses to assist students to explore concepts and care-giving approaches that will allow them to work effectively with individuals experiencing cognitive or mental challenges. Emphasis is on supporting clients with dementia, recognizing responsive behaviours and identifying person-centered interventions strategies.
HCA107 - Healing 3: Personal Care and Assistance
HCA 107 Healing 3 - Personal Care and Assistance offers students the opportunity to acquire personal care and assistance skills within the parameters of the HCA role. The course is comprised of class and supervised laboratory experiences which assists the student to integrate theory from other courses to develop caregiver skills that maintain and promote the comfort, safety and independence of individuals in community and facility contexts.
HCA108 - Practice Experience in Home Support and Assisted Living
HCA 108 Practice Experience in Home Support and Assisted Living provides students with an opportunity to apply knowledge and skills from all other courses with individuals and families in a community setting. Opportunity will be provided for students to become more familiar with the role of the HCA within a Home Support Agency, Assisted Living Facility and Acute Care settings, and to gain abilities that will prepare graduates for employment in these settings. It is important that students understand the philosophy of community care settings and its emphasis on client choice and independence.
HCA109 - Practice Experience in Multi-Level/Complex Care
HCA 109 Practice Experience in Multi-Level and Complex Care is a supervised practice experience that provides students with an opportunity to apply knowledge and skills from all other courses in the program with individuals in a multi-level or complex care setting. A portion of this clinical experience will be devoted to working with individuals with dementia. Opportunity will be provided for students to gain expertise and confidence with the role of the HCA within a residential care facility.
Tuition & Fees
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