Healthcare Office Assistant

healthcare office assistant answering phone in medical office

Healthcare Office Assistant-Diploma Program

Become a Healthcare office assistant and join the administrative support team in a variety of healthcare settings. Your HCOA training prepares you for rewarding careers with dental, medical, pharmacy, physiotherapy, optometry and chiropractic and other clinics.

In this program, you’ll learn the necessary computer software, professional office skills, and the core elements of anatomy, physiology, terminology and pharmacology. As a graduate you’ll have the training you need to find employment in the growing healthcare industry.

  • Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:
  • Apply and understand commonly used healthcare terminology
  • Utilize current computer applications such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Outlook, Internet and Email
  • Transcribe medical letters and reports
  • Follow office protocol relating to professionalism, confidentiality, communication and dispute resolution
  • Practice empathic listening and customer service skills when communicating with patients or clients
  • Handle difficult clients
  • Manage incoming and outgoing mail (postal and electronic)
  • Understand and utilize office procedures for scheduling appointments, maintaining appointment records, receiving office calls
  • Understand and utilize procedures for answering, transferring and screening office calls
  • Understand and utilize billing procedures for various offices
  • Understand Release of Information Regulations
  • Perform office assistant duties in pharmacies, hospitals, dental and medical offices and physiotherapy, chiropractic, optometrist and naturopathic clinics
  • Work as Medical Transcriptionists
  • General Administration, anywhere
  • BC is currently massive facing worker shortages in health occupations
  • Population growth, an aging population, and technological advances in diagnosis and treatment are contributing to increasing demands for health services
  • The Government is investing in the growth of wellness centres in BC

Work BC

As a graduated Healthcare Office Assistant you’ll be confident and prepared to join the administrative team in the growing healthcare industry.

Types of Employment
• Perform office assistant duties in pharmacies, hospitals, dental and medical offices and physiotherapy, chiropractic, optometrist and naturopathic clinics
• Work as Medical Transcriptionists

Where HCOA Graduates are Working
• St. Joseph’s Hospital
• Courtenay Medical Clinic
• Comox Valley Medical Associates
• Comox Valley Family Services
• Powell River Hospital
• Medical Clinic in Parksville
• Alano Club
• Comox Medical Clinic
• Mt. Washington
• Valley Care Medical


41 weeks (approximately 820 hours) total

  • 38 weeks of classroom training and a 3 week practicum placement

This Healthcare Office Assistant program includes office skills specific to the healthcare industry as well as terminology and procedures. It also includes a practicum to provide an opportunity to use your knowledge in a real work setting.

Healthcare Office Skills & Procedures
• Telephone Techniques & Filing Systems
• Scheduling
• Code of Ethics & Confidentiality
• Medico Legal
• Psychology of Patients Needs
• Patients, Colleagues & Communications
• Office Equipment
• Healthcare Insurance
• Clinical Records
• Vital Signs & Standard Precautions

Medical Office Skills
• Medical Terminology
• Medical Transcription & Typing Skills
• Medical Billing Terminology
• Dental Office Skills
• Dental Terminology
• Dental Procedures
• Dental Insurance and Billing

Pharmacy Assistant Skills
• History of Pharmacy & Interpretation of Prescriptions
• Medication Handling
• Receiving and storing
• Pharmacy Procedures

Computer & Administrative Skills
• Introduction to Technology & Keyboarding
• Microsoft Outlook
• Microsoft Word
• Microsoft Excel
• Microsoft Access
• Business Communications

Job Search Skills
First Aid & CPR
Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems (WHMIS)

Students participate in 3-week practicum near the end of their program.  During this time students take the role of employee, and work diligently to maximize the learning opportunity and create a positive experience for themselves, the college and the practicum host.

  • Confirmation of mature student status (19 years or older on first day, and out of school for 1 full year) OR if under 19, evi-dence of Grade 12 completion or equivalent
  • Entrance assessment
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must meet Excel’s English Language Proficiency Requirements
  • Some level of touch-typing skills preferred (speed is not important)
  • Students are assessed on each module of their program by either a test, project, assignment or demonstration of skills
  • Students are assessed of professionalism, conduct, and attendance and their practical training components
  • An average of all module grades, as well as the grades for professional conduct and attendance is calculated. Successful completion of the program requires a minimum of a 65% grade in each program module, and successful completion of the practicum component.

Students Supply:

  • Loose-leaf paper & 3-ring binder
  • USB Flash drive, if desired
  • Pens/pencils/highlighters
  • Work appropriate attire

College Supplies:

  • Handouts & photocopied materials
  • Student Manuals
  • Equipment and Supplies for hands-on training

Healthcare Office Assistant Program Fees

Tuition: $10,332.00
Registration: 100.00
Books/Materials: 1,457.49
GST on Books/Supplies: 72.87
Total: $11,962.36

Registration: 200.00
Books/Materials: 1,457.49
GST on Books/Supplies: 72.87
Total: $14,645.36

Please review our Refund Policy.

Click image to download Program Outline

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