Enhanced Skill Program - Geriatric Care Chilliwack by Gateway College


Start dates - Year 2020: March 16 / July 13 / November 23
                           Year 2021: April 5 / August 2/ November 29

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Program Overview

This Health Care Assistant Program is designed to enhance the knowledge and skill of learners to work with older adults in order to effectively meet the needs of the aging population. This Health Care Assistant 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 and 12 weeks of Co-op 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 that includes 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.

Job Titles: Health Care Assistant, Resident Care Attendant, Long-term Care Aide, Home Support Worker, Personal Care Attendant etc.
Credential: Diploma
Hours: Mon to Fri 9am to 3:30pm
Length: 1010 hours over 38 weeks
Delivery Mode: Traditional (In-class) or Combination (Online+On-site)
Campus: Vancouver, BC

Tuition and fees:

Non-refundable Application Fee: $250 (Domestic)/ $300 (International)
Tuition: $4,800 (Domestic)/ $12,355 (International)

*Tuition does not include textbooks, supplies and other applicable costs



    • Applicants must be at least 19 years of age prior to start of the study period, or must be graduated from grade 12. (or equivalent)
    • Applicants must provide proof of meeting English language competency requirements. (Please refer to the language proficiency policy.)

    Language Proficiency

    For applicants whose first language is English,

    • Provide transcript or proof of completion of Grade 10 English, or
    • College courses determined to be equivalent to completion of Grade 10 English by post-secondary institutions (minimum C grade is acceptable)
    • Other tests such as Canadian Adult Achievement Test (CAAT), Language Placement Index (LPI) or Accuplacer may be accepted.

    For applicants whose first language is not English, evidence of one of the following test scores:

    English Proficiency Test Overall Score Speaking Listening Writing Reading
    IELTS ** 6 6 6 5.5 5.5
    TOEFL (IBT) ** 76 20 20 18 18
    CLBPT * n/a 7 7 6 6
    CELPIP ** n/a 7 7 6 6
    CELBAN ** n/a 7 7 6 6

    * CLBPT test is only available for students currently in Canada. The test result is valid for one year. (a CLB Report Card from a LINC Program may also be accepted.)
    ** The test result is valid for two years.

    Upon successful completion of the program, students will be granted the following credentials:

    • Enhanced Skills Program - Geriatric Diploma
    • Health Care Assistant – Accelerated Diploma
    • Dementia Certificate
    • Medication Administration Certificate
    • HCA Acute Care Certificate
    • Provincial Violence Prevention Certificate

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


    What to expect- Program Schedule


    • Week 1-12 (On-campus, 9:00 am – 3:30 pm): Theory courses
    • Week 13-16 (On-campus, 9:00 am – 3:30 pm): Healing 3: Personal Care and Assistance (lab training)
    • Week 17-23 (On-site, variable 40 hours a week schedule): Work Experience courses
    • Week 24-25 (On-campus, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm): Theory courses
    • Week 26-38 (On-site, variable about 20 hours a week schedule): Co-op work experience

    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, 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


    • 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

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