Thompson Rivers University

15 new spaces for Health Care Assistant program in Williams Lake

  Posted on: March 31, 2016

Health Care Assistant

Health Care Assistants are in high demand and can work in the community and in care facilities.

Fifteen new health care assistant spaces are being added to the Williams Lake Campus to meet the demand for the delivery of health care in the community, BC Premier Christy Clark announced during a Chamber of Commerce luncheon.

the one-time funding of $150,000 from the Ministry of Advanced Education for a short-duration remote/regional health care assistant (HCA) program at the Williams Lake Campus addresses the immediate needs of aligning qualified health care professionals with current demand. The money pays for 15 additional spaces for the September 2016 intake and will be offered to students in the regional communities of 100 Mile, Barriere, Clearwater, Chase and Lillooet.

“We are very happy our government is supporting funding allowing us to address the needs of the rural and remote communities of the Thompson, Cariboo and Chilcotin, while studying how new delivery models can be designed to help improve access to programs,” said Donna Murnaghan, TRU dean of nursing.

Said TRU President and Vice-Chancellor Alan Shaver: “Our top priorities are increasing student success and serving our community. This programming and the funding are examples of how TRU and government are listening to the needs of remote and rural communities. In a few short months, the first students will be working and serving with the knowledge that they are making a difference in someone’s life every day.”

As front-line caregivers who are in high demand, HCAs can work in both community and facility settings. Focusing on the elderly and people with disabilities, HCAs provide personal care that promotes and maintains physical, psychological and social well-being.

The 15 additional HCA full-time equivalent spaces will increase the annual delivery to 99 seats in 2016-17. Training lasts 27 weeks and results in a health care assistant certificate.

Said Cariboo Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett: “Funding health care assistant spaces in Williams Lake demonstrates the commitment by our government to answering the skills needs of our province.”

Said Premier Clark: “Our province has a growing and aging population that wants to remain with their neighbours and family in their home community for as long as possible. Training more health care assistants plays an important role in supporting the health needs of friends, families and neighbours in regions such as Williams Lake.”

The Province has provided one-time funding for additional education spaces in health programs each year since 2008. Funding to date totals $14.8 million, which has created more than 1,800 student spaces.

Media Contacts

Contact Media Relations

Stephen Smart
Office of the Premier
Press Secretary

Rodney Porter
Ministry of Advanced Education
Communications Director

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