Certificate in Health Care (with strands in Assistance or Advocacy) (Level 4)

Do you love helping people and want better job security? Health care is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world and this qualification will give you the skills and confidence to step into it.

This low-cost programme equips you with the core skills you need to provide quality care. It’s an ideal course for people wanting to enter the health care sector, or for health care workers already working in the industry who want to upskill.

Over 18 weeks you’ll cover topics including; the human body, professional practice, community wellness, dementia and the New Zealand health system. This is combined with 40 hours of first-hand experience within a health care setting as an employee or volunteer.

NOTE: Toi Ohomai offers only the Assistance strand, not the Advocacy strand.

Content Details

During the 18-week programme, you'll cover a range of topics, including:

Anatomy and Physiology
Examine anatomy and physiology of the major body systems to gain an in-depth view of how they function and why.

Professional Practice
Enhance your learning and study processes, as well as your communication skills to better prepare yourself for a successful career. Learn about the maintenance and promotion of healthy living, and examine beliefs, values and attitudes, advocacy, roles and responsibilities to ensure you’re giving the best care possible.

Comprehensive First Aid
Gain comprehensive training in first aid with nationally recognised unit standards.

Working with Health Care Consumers/Tangata Whai Ora
Learn the skills needed to deliver safe personal and musculoskeletal care for consumers. You’ll also learn how to support people living with dementia when their behaviour presents challenges.

Community Health
Learn about ethical behaviour in the health industry from a New Zealand point of view and gain skills to effectively communicate with consumers in a health, disability or community setting.

Work Experience
You must undertake 40 hours of work experience to complete the programme; your regular health-related employment can count towards the required 40 hours.


Planned intakes*: February, July
Delivery modes: Full-time
Locations*: Tauranga (Windermere Campus)
Duration: 18 weeks

* subject to change. Intakes may vary between locations.

You will attend class Thursday and Friday each week. In addition you will be required to complete your 40 hours of work experience (paid or voluntary) and undertake self-directed study.

To see full details of the next available intake please visit the application form.

Indicative Fees

2018 domestic students $1,683.00

2018 international students $10,806.00

The fee shown for domestic students is applicable to New Zealand citizens and permanent residents. If an international fee is not listed above please refer to the international fees page. All fees are indicative only and subject to change.

You MAY be eligible for a StudyLink Student Loan for your tuition fees.

Find out if your programme qualifies by visiting the Studylink website.

If you also need to pay course related costs, i.e. if outlined in programme costs above, you need to apply separately to StudyLink (up to $1,000/academic year for eligible students). Note course related costs are paid directly into your bank account by StudyLink and you will be required to pay this to Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology.

Qualifications Gained

Upon successful completion of the programme you will receive:

  • Certificate in Health Care (Assistance) (Level 4)
  • Comprehensive First Aid Certificate

Career Opportunities

  • Health care assistant
  • Caregiver (rest home or community based)
  • Home support worker
  • Teacher aide (special physical needs)
  • Community worker
  • Physiotherapy assistant

Entry Criteria

To gain entry into this programme, you must meet the following criteria:

  • A minimum of three years secondary education or have life and/or work experience which is relevant to the programme
  • and/or be able to demonstrate that you have the ability, interest and motivation to succeed in the programme
  • and have good communication and team skills
  • and be either working in the health care industry or willing to gain employment in this field while studying


International applicants for whom English is not their first language will be required to show evidence of language competency, issued within the last two years, before being eligible to enrol in any non-English programme. The level of competency required is outlined in Rule 18 and Appendix 2 of the NZQF Programme and Accreditation Rules 2013. And below under the title English Competency.

English Competency

Level 4 certificate IELTS General or Academic score of 5.5 with no band score lower than 5 or completed NZ Certificate in English Language L3 with an endorsement of either General, Workplace or Academic, or meets a relevant English Proficiency Outcome as outlined in Rule 18 and Appendix 2 of the NZQF Programme and Accreditation Rules 2013.

For domestic applicants for whom English is not their first language, evidence of language competency may be required.