HCAT 127 - Practice Experience in Multi-Level and/or
Complex Care

This supervised practice experience provides students with an opportunity to apply knowledge and skills from all other courses in the program with individuals in a multi-level or complex care setting. A portion of this clinical experience will be devoted to working with individuals with dementia. Opportunity will be provided for students to gain expertise and confidence with the role of the HCA within a residential care facility.


Hours: 210 (Practicum Hours: 210)


HCAT 110, HCAT 111, HCAT 112, HCAT 113, HCAT 123, HCAT 124, and HCAT 125


Non-Course Prerequisites:
Schedule B CRC (works with children and adults) and immunizations as specified in the Program Completion Guide




Course Content:
Clinical practicum includes intermediate care, extended care, and special care utilizing Continuing Care facilities.


Learning Outcomes:
1. Provide person‐centred care and assistance that recognizes and respects the uniqueness of each individual client:
    • View each client as a whole, unique individual.
    • Respect the individuality, independence and dignity of clients and families.
    • Display respect  and sensitivity to individuals and families from diverse backgrounds and cultures.
    • Display a non‐judgmental approach in all aspects of care provision.
    • Support the autonomy and uniqueness of clients and their families.
    • Encourage clients to share their thoughts, feelings and preferences.
    • View the older person as an individual possessing a wealth of experience, knowledge and wisdom.
    • Base care and assistance functions on the client’s unique needs, capabilities and interests.
    • Provide clear information to the client about the care or service to be provided and deal with questions or concerns in a calm, caring fashion.
    • Encourage clients to be involved in their own care.
    • Support client independence.
    • Encourage clients to make choices and participate in decisions about their care, as they are able.
    • Encourage family involvement, as appropriate, in the care of their family member.
    • Observe family members for signs of stress and consult with an appropriate health care professional for direction.
    • Report abusive or neglectful situations promptly to a health professional for appropriate action.
2. Use an informed problem-solving approach to provide care and assistance that promotes the physical, psychological, social, cognitive and spiritual well‐being of clients and families:
    • Assess the client and situation using informed observation, reflection and communication.
    • Observe changes in the client’s health status and report these changes to the appropriate health care professional.
    • Identify priorities for care within the care plan.
    • Be guided by knowledge of health, healing, human needs and human development.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the interconnectedness of physical, psychological, social and spiritual aspects of health and healing.
    • Display an understanding of the importance of the family in health and healing.
    • Display an awareness of the role of culture, diversity and life experience in health and healing.
    • Display an appreciation of the importance of traditional medicines and alternative forms of healing to the client and family.
    • Utilize appropriate health team members as resources to augment one’s own problem-solving and decision-making.
    • Follow the care plan for each client.
    • Consult with health team members to review and evaluate care and make modifications to the care plan as needed.
    • Carry out recording requirements in a timely fashion.
    • Use clear, current, factual, objective and relevant language when reporting or documenting client information.
    • Utilize creativity when required to adapt care and service to a variety of contexts.
3. Provide care and assistance for clients experiencing complex health challenges:
    • Base choices and actions on a sound understanding of normal anatomy and physiology and common changes associated with aging.
    • Base choices and actions on a sound understanding of common challenges to health and healing.
    • Organize, administer and evaluate care and service for clients with complex health challenges.
    • Assist clients and families to maintain independent functioning within their capabilities.
    • Provide caring and supportive end-of-life care for clients in a manner that promotes comfort and dignity.
4. Provide care and assistance for clients experiencing cognitive and/or mental health challenges:
    • Organize, administer and evaluate care and service for clients experiencing cognitive and/or mental health challenges.
    • Base choices and actions on a sound understanding of the physical, psycho-social processes of dementia.
    • Base choices and actions on an understanding of  environmental influences on  behaviours.
    • Tailor interactions and responses based on an understanding of common mental health challenges.
    • Cope constructively with unanticipated or unusual situations.
    • Identify when crisis intervention skills are required and respond appropriately.
5. Interact with other members of the health care team in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals:
    • Use caring, respectful communication with all members of the health care team.
    • Seek clarification, guidance and assistance from other health team members when needed.
    • Contribute observations and information to care planning sessions.
    • Communicate changes in the client’s health status to the appropriate health team member so that the care plan is kept current.
    • Communicate with confidence and appropriate assertiveness.
    • Offer support and assistance to other health team members as appropriate.
    • Report and record relevant information in a clear, concise and objective manner.
    • Use appropriate lines of communication in accordance with agency, facility or  employer standards and policies.
    • Identify problems, concerns and conflict within the health team and discuss these with appropriate team members in  timely function.
    • Approach problems or conflict in a non-threatening way.
    • Respond non-defensively to feedback, even when provided in a critical or confrontational manner.
6. Communicate clearly, accurately and in sensitive ways with clients and families:
    • Demonstrate an ability to write and speak English in  a manner that can be easily understood.
    • Use English in such a way as to be clearly understood.
    • Use appropriate volume, tone and vocabulary.
    • Use language and a communication style that is appropriate to the client, family or situation.
    • Identify barriers to communication and make efforts to improve communication.
    • Interact in a manner that respects the rights, needs, interests and preferences of others.
    • Observe common courtesies such as addressing the client and family member by name of choice and speaking in a manner to be readily understood.
    • Use touch appropriately and respectfully.
    • Use humour appropriately.
    • Maintain appropriate interpersonal and professional boundaries.
    • Respect and adapt to a family and client’s cultural background.
    • Recognize non-verbal communication.
    • Use non-verbal attending skills including eye contact, body positioning and attentive facial expression.
    • Use active listening skills. 
    • Use appropriate self-disclosure.
    • Utilize effective approaches to conflict management.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of the stressors experienced by clients and families as they are reflected in communication patterns.
    • Recognize abusive communication and report in accordance with agency/facility or employer standards and policies.
7. Provide personal care and assistance in a safe, competent and organized manner:
    • Wear safe and appropriate clothing, including identification.
    • Adhere to the client’s care plan.
    • Assess the client and the environment prior to commencing care.
    • Adjust environments, as appropriate, to ensure safety and to promote efficiency.
    • Set priorities or make adjustments to the care process based on client requirements.
    • Organize and implement care according to client needs.
    • Organize time and equipment for safety and efficiency.
    • Base choices and actions on a sound knowledge of asepsis and body mechanics.
    • Adhere to infection control practices.
    • Report, verbally and in writing, unsafe work environments.
    • Encourage independence of the  client as much as possible.
    • Encourage family involvement in care whenever possible.
    • Recognize and make wise choices in situations of potential risk to self or others.
    •  Encourage client communication and engagement during personal care.
    • Maintain client privacy and dignity.
    • Assist the client with personal hygiene and grooming.
    • Assist the client with movement and ambulation.
    • Use aids to promote comfort, relaxation and sleep.
    • Take and record vital signs accurately.
    • Provide specialized, sensitive care for the dying client in line with palliative care principles.
    • Exhibit flexible and adaptable behaviour.
8. Recognize and respond to own self-development, learning and health enhancement needs:
    • Identify own learning and personal/ professional development needs.
    • Invite feedback from other health team members related to own performance.
    • Collaborate with appropriate health professionals to identify and utilize opportunities for specific learning and training
    • Identify and utilize opportunities to learn from clients, families and colleagues.
    • Share new learning with other health team members.
    • Reflect on own choices and behaviours as they contribute to physical, psychological, social, cognitive and spiritual health.
    • Strive to demonstrate increasingly healthful self-care practices.
9. Perform the care-giver role in a reflective, responsible, accountable and professional manner:
    • Practise within the parameters of practice for a student in the HCA program.
    • Foster and uphold the mission, policies and standards of the care facility.
    • Collaborate with other members of the health team.
    • Use appropriate lines of communication.
    • Clarify one’s own role to others when necessary.
    • Demonstrate dependability, reliability, honesty and integrity.
    • Reflect on one’s own values, beliefs and standards in relation to care-giving practice.
    • Recognize how one’s own beliefs, values, standards and cultural background may be different or similar to those of clients and families.
    • Recognize how one’s own beliefs and values influence one’s responses to clients, families and situations.
    • Maintain a non-judgmental position in light of difficult or unusual client or family situations.
    • Advocate on behalf of the rights, needs, interests and fair treatment of clients and their families.
    • Maintain client and family confidentiality.
    • Set appropriate personal boundaries in interactions with clients and family members.
    • Promote own personal safety, health and well-being.
    • Challenge questionable actions or decisions made by other health team members.
    • Champion the role of the HCA on the health care team.


Grading System: Pass/Fail


Passing Grade: Pass


Text Books:
Textbooks are subject to change.  Please contact the bookstore at your local campus for current book lists.