Health Care Assistant - Access

Program Overview

The program is ideal for those who have prior learning or work experience in the field, and would like to refresh or update their skills and knowledge to meet and exceed the BC Provincial Standards. This program will help learners to develop the knowledge, skills and attitude necessary to function effectively as Health Care Assistants. Successful graduates will be able to provide person-centered care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social well-being of clients/residents. Graduates from this program will work as part of a team within a health care team under the supervision of a health care professional such as a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse.  The graduates can 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, home support, rehabilitation facilities, and group homes.

Effective September 2016, Gateway College will be implementing the HCA Provincial Curriculum 2015 into all the HCA courses. Graduates of the Health Care Assistant - Access delivered by Gateway College are eligible for registration with the BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry.


* This program has been approved by the registrar of the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills & Training.


Student loans are available for qualified local students.

Program Duration

Health Care Assistant - Access : 26 Weeks (Part-time)

Program Delivery Options

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

  • Traditional Education

  • Distance Education: Blended Learning (On-line + 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)*


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


  • Health Care Assistant - Access Diploma

  • Emergency First Aid Level C Certitificate issued by Red Cross

  • FoodSafe Certificate issued by BC FOODSAFE

  • Dementia Certificate

  • WHMIS Certificate

  • Medication Administration Certificate

  • HCA Acute Care Certificate*

  • Provincial Violence Prevention Certificate*

  • 135 hours of practicum experience.

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


* Effective September 2016


Course List
  • Access Health and Healing: Concept for Practice

  • Health Care Assistant: Introduction to Practice

  • Acess Health 1: Interpersonal Communications

  • Access Health 2: Lifestyle and Choices

  • Access Healing 1: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Callenges

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

  • Access Healting 3: Personal Care and Assistant

  • Access Practice Experience in Home Support and/or Assisted Living

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

  • Emergency First Aid & CPR Level C

  • FoodSafe



Start Date

Please click here for the next class date.

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