Health Care Aide

Take patients’ blood pressure, temperature and pulse; report or record fluid intake and output; observe or monitor patients’ status and document patient care on charts; administer first aid in emergency situations; collect specimens such as urine, faeces or sputum; administer suppositories, colonic irrigations and enemas and perform other procedures as directed by nursing and hospital staff. They may help transport patients by wheelchair or stretcher for treatment or surgery, carry messages, reports, requisitions and specimens between departments.

Health care aides are supervised by nurses or other health professionals. They provide basic health services for clients with medical or functional problems. Health care aides provide physical and emotional support so clients can care for themselves as much as possible. This may be within the community, or in a hospital or long-term care placement.

Average Hourly


Range Hourly

$10.70 – $25.33

Average Yearly


Range Yearly

$20,866 – $49,394

Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (3413)

Continuing care assistant

Escort - health services

First aid attendant

Geriatric aide

Geriatric health care attendant

Health care aide

Health care assistant

Hospice worker

Hospital aide

Hospital attendant

Long term care aide

Medical aide

Medical attendant - patient transfer

Medical orderly

Neuropsychiatric aide

Nurse aide

Nursery aide - hospital

Nursing assistant (non-registered)

Nursing attendant

Nursing home attendant

Nursing orderly

Nursing services aide

Operating room aide


Patient care aide

Patient care assistant

Patient care associate

Patient service aide

Patient service assistant

Patient service associate

Patient service attendant

Patient service worker

Personal care aide - medical

Personal care attendant - medical

Personal care provider - medical

Personal support aide - medical

Psychiatric aide

Registered care aide

Resident care aide - medical

Resident companion - medical

Respite care aide

Service assistant - medical

Service associate - medical

Service attendant - medical

Special care aide - nursing

Special care facility attendant

Special care worker - medical

Support services assistant - medical

Surgical aide

Unit aide - medical

Unit assistant - medical

Unit support technician - medical

Ward aide - medical

On-the-job training is sufficient. However, often many employers prefer candidates having health care aide certification

First-aid, BLS, ACLS certificate may be required

Average hourly

Range hourly

Average yearly

Range yearly


$10.70 - $25.33


$20,866 - $49,394


Employment outlook is good to fair across provinces. More information is available here.

Without further education further growth in the job is limited.

Having a certificate in Health Care Aide program will facilitate employment:

Following institutions offer Health Care Aide certificate programs:

ABM College

Bow Valley College

Red Deer College

Vancouver Community College

Red River College

Excellent communication skills; people’s skills; empathetic; ability to work independently, Patience, Flexibility, Organizational skills and attention to detail; teamwork; self-confidence; leadership skills; adaptability

Helping people to move, bathe, dress and perform other daily tasks can be physically demanding. They may be on their feet for long periods of time. They need good general health, knowledge of body mechanics and awareness of proper lifting techniques.

Working conditions vary greatly. Health care aides may work in institutions or private homes. These settings can be quite nice, or they can be less than ideal. Although many clients are pleasant and co-operative, some are difficult. Dealing with difficult clients can be frustrating and stressful.

Hours of work also vary. Many agencies offer 24-hour service, so shift work (including weekends) is often required.

  1. Getting certificates for first aid, Basic Life Support (BLS), etc. is an asset

  2. Enrolling into a Health care aide certificate program with practicum placement