Enhanced Skills Program - Geriatric Care

Program Overview

This program is designed to enhance the knowledge and skill of learners who work with older adults to effectively meet the needs of the aging population.  This program will focus on gaining a greater understanding of the physical, social, cognitive and spiritual needs of the older adults, and the challenges faced by our aging population. Our dedicated and experienced instructors will provide quality education with hands-on training to prepare students for the real world. Students will practice their techniques in labs equipped with articulated mannequins, hospital beds, medical gear and fixtures. Furthermore, students will participate at a designated facility or a hospital and interact with patients throughout the practicum training period.

This training will help students learn proficiency and the confidence most needed on a job. Our graduates work in both private and publicly funded facilities and hospitals as well as a variety of community settings. These may include extended care, intermediate care, assisted living, acute care hospitals, home support, rehabilitation facilities, and group homes. HCAs work as part of a team within a health care unit under the supervision of a health care professional such as a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse.

Enhanced Skills Program - Geriatric Care was reviewed and approved by the registrar of the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills & Training.

Program Duration

Total 1044 hours over 38 Weeks


Program Delivery Options

To meet the need of students who require flexibility and convenience, this program is offered in:

  • Traditional Education (In-class)

  • Distance Education: Blended Learning (Online + In-class) 


Admission Requirements

Please click here for admission requirement.


Program outline
  • Concepts for Practice (theory, roles, law, organization)

  • Interpersonal Communications (empathy, medical terms)

  • Anatomy and Physiology (intro to body systems)

  • Lifestyle and Choices (activities of daily living)

  • Personal Care Skills (hygiene, comfort, simple treatments)

  • Caring for Common Health Challenges (life cycle)

  • Mobility Techniques (body mechanics)

  • Pharmacology (assisting with medication delivery)

  • Gerontology (study of aging process, demography)

  • Cognitive and Mental Health (including addictions)

  • Dementia (causes, stages, behaviors, Alzheimer’s Disease)

  • Palliative Care (end-of-life care, pain management, grieving)

  • Family Dynamics (culture, diversity, domestic violence)

  • Nutrition (menu planning, diet, Canada’s Food Guide)

  • Safe Work Practices (infection control, WHMIS, fire safety)

  • Assault Response (defensive and preventive skills)

  • Professional Development (transitions, employment skills)

  • Basic Computer Skills (Word Processing, Email, Internet Search, Netiquette)

  • Acute Care (Acute Care Settings, Roles of HCA in Acute Care)

  • Paid Co-op Work Experience


Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to obtain:

  • Enhanced Skills Program - Geriatric Care Diploma

  • Health Care Assistant - Accelerated Diploma

  • Standard First Aid & CPR Level C Certificate issued by Red Cross

  • FoodSafe Certificate issued by BC FOODSAFE

  • Dementia Certificate

  • WHMIS Certificate

  • Medication Administration Certificate

  • Provincial Violence Prevention Certificate

  • HCA Acute Care Certificate

  • 280 hours of work experience (Clinical Placement + Practicum)

  • 240 hours of paid co-op work experience

  • Eligibility to register with the "BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry."


Course List
  • Health and Healing: Concept for Practice

  • Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice

  • Health 1: Interpersonal Communications

  • Health 2: Lifestyle and Choices

  • Healing 1: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Challenges

  • Healing 2: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Cognitive or Mental Challenges

  • Healing 3: Personal Care and Assistant

  • Practice Experience in Home Support and/or Assisted Living

  • Practice Experience in Multi-Level and/or Complex Care

  • Gerontology

  • ESPGC: Co-op

  • Emergency First Aid & CPR Level C

  • FoodSafe



Start Date

Please click here for the next class date.


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E-mail: info@gwcollege.ca