Continuing Education for HCAs

To support HCAs in finding education for continuing competency, we are providing a listing of courses.    

This list is not exhaustive and focuses on learning opportunities offered by non-profit and publicly funded organizations.  Private training institutions may offer relevant courses as well; these can be searched on a centralized directory

The title of each course is linked to online course information; these links have been generated by other organizations and the Registry does not control or guarantee the information provided in this section.  As well, the links are not listed in an order that is intended to reflect their importance.
While they may be of interest to many applicants, please note that courses followed with a * indicate that they provide targeted remedial education for applicants who have taken Nursing Community Assessment Service (NCAS).   These are courses that have been listed specifically in the remedial education referrals.

*NEW- Health Care Assistant Practice in British Columbia
This free online, self-paced course provides an overview of information that is relevant to HCA practice in the province of British Columbia. This 5-hour course develops an awareness of HCA parameters of practice in BC and the different types of health care settings where HCAs work. It covers the importance of working collaboratively in the health care team and highlights key concepts such as person-centered care as well as legal, ethical and professional approaches to practice.

This course is available on the LearningHub. For more information and a list of other Learning Hub Courses that may be of interest to HCAs, click here.

*NEW- Skills to Support Independent Living
This free online facilitated course focuses on practical skills that can be applied immediately in learners’ work settings to promote their clients’ health and safety. The University of Victoria’s professional micro-credential has been funded by the British Columbia Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training to equip home care aides in BC to use the evidence-based tools of the Strategies and Actions for Independent Living (SAIL) fall prevention program. Learners will develop skills in effective communication, team-building, identification of risk factors, and implementation of proven multifactorial strategies for fall prevention. This is a 3-week, online, asynchronous course, with no requirement to be online at any particular time (expect 4-5 hours per week). Contact the University of Victoria to register for free.

Body Mechanics and Client Mobility *
This online course addresses the HCA’s role in facilitating safe client ambulation and positioning, and the proper use of body mechanics. 

Infection Prevention  *
This online course will help participants understand the factors involved in the spread of infection and best practices for infection prevention.

Medication Basics for Health Care Assistants  *
This online course prepares the HCA to provide assistance with medications.  This course does not meet the requirements for Health Care Assistants to administer medications in Assisted Living settings.

Planning, Time Management & Organization for HCAs *
This fully on-line course is intended for Health Care Assistants (HCAs), or prospective HCAs in British Columbia (BC). The course covers content from the BC Health Care Assistant Provincial Curriculum Guide (2015) related to planning, time management, and organization skills for the HCA.

Health Care Assistant - Introduction to Practice Course *
This course provides an introduction to the role of the HCA within the British Columbia health care system.  Students will be introduced to the health care team and the roles and functions of HCAs within the team. 

Dementia Care *
This online course is intended for anyone who wants to increase their knowledge of dementia and dementia care.

SafeCare BC Courses
SafeCare BC is committed to providing outstanding professional development for continuing care workers in BC as well as connecting continuing care workers to other professional development opportunities.  Courses include Violence Prevention, Creating Connections: Working with People with Dementia and Safe Resident Handling.

Suicide and Alertness Training
The Canadian Mental Health Association offers the following suicide and alertness training courses:
Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) is a two-day interactive workshop in suicide intervention and safety planning.
Suicide Alertness for Everyone (safeTALK) is a half-day training in suicide alertness.

Mental Health First Aid
Mental Health First Aide is help provided to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis.

Medication Management for Health Care Assistants
This course is intended to support Health Care Assistants seeking employment in Assisted Living Facilities.   Participants learn how medication administration is incorporated into the philosophy of assisted living care settings.

Certificate in Medication Administration for Health Care Assistants
This two-course certificate program will give participants an opportunity to review medication administration theory, and to practice the skills in a lab setting.  Successful completion of the full program will prepare individuals to safely administer medications in the Assisted Living setting under the supervision of a nurse.

Long-term Care Management
This four course, part-time, online program is designed primarily for staff who aspire to move into leadership positions within the rapidly expanding long-term care industry, but is also open to individuals with experience in other industries.  The program will provide an overview of the key concepts necessary for successful leadership in long-term care. For program description, click here

End of Life Doula 
This course is designed for individuals who have been or will be called upon to provide care, support and advocacy for someone who is facing the end of their life.  Students in this program develop an understanding of how the continuity of care and advocacy they provide complements the end of life care provided by the medical community and hospice palliative care workers and volunteers.  Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the questions and issues that arise at end of life; this course will provide opportunities to discuss issues, ask questions and navigate community resources that can support you as a caregiver through the end of life journey.

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction 
Mindfulness is “paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, without judging”.  Often, we can be lost in our thoughts or distractions and miss out on what really matters in our lives.  Offered over eight evenings plus one full-day retreat, this program offers guided mindfulness meditation practices that help participants learn to focus their energy and attention, and manage distractions and stresses, to live mindfully.

Activity Assistant Certificate Program
This unique online program provides specialized professional training for individuals who have previous education and training in health care (LPNs, RNs, health care assistants (HCAs) and home care aides) or community support (education assistant/community support graduates). Program participants learn to plan and implement supervised activities for older adults with cognitive and physical impairments, gain hands-on experience and make employer connections with supervised practicum experience.