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Patient Care Assistant

Program Description

The Patient Care Assistant (PCA) Certificate program prepares students with relevant healthcare knowledge, occupational-specific skills, and attitude needed for employment as cross-trained nursing assistants in various healthcare settings (acute-care, long-term care, physician’s office, and in home health). There are four (4) rigorous courses in this program designed to cultivate critical thinking, problem-solving and employability skills based on quality academic standards. Graduates of this program are eligible to sit for a certification exam to become a certified nursing assistant (CNA).


The PCA program will be offered face-to-face, and web enhanced. The program has a total of 392 contact hours of combined didactic/theory, skills laboratory/simulation and clinical/practicum at healthcare facilities. Program content include, but is not limited to

effective communication skills, basic nursing skills, safe and effective basic patient care assistance including activities of daily living (ADL) across the life-span and a major focus in adult and gerontology care, end-of-life care, employability skills, emergency care, infection control, supervised medication administration, rehabilitative and restorative care, structure and function of body systems, vital signs, ethical and legal issues, nutrition, human needs and development, and pet-facilitated therapy.


Program Learning Outcomes: By the end of this PCA program, 80% of the graduates will obtain at least an 80% of the following program learning outcomes as measured by their clinical/practicum evaluation tool:

  • Provide respectful basic nursing care to patients and include individual needs, choice, personal values and input from family members (Patient-Centered Care).
  • Demonstrate the ability to clearly and respectful communicate verbally and nonverbally with patients, family, visitors and healthcare personnel (Communication).
  • Demonstrate the ability to accurately identify and report to relevant healthcare personnel, patients’ actual and potential healthcare problems (Critical-Thinking/Problem-Solving).
  • Demonstrate caring, empathy, and understanding of patient and family situation (Compassion).
  • Demonstrate knowledge of safety guidelines when providing basic nursing care to patients (Safety).
  • Demonstrate knowledge of basic nursing care information and skills to provide safe and appropriate care to patients (Knowledge/Skill).
  • Demonstrate the ability to work effectively with patients, family and other healthcare personnel to provide safe and effective care to patients (Teamwork).
  • Demonstrate respect, honesty and loyalty to self and others and knowledge of guidelines and laws that regulates the practice of nursing assistant (Legal/Ethical).
  • Demonstrate use of relevant technology to provide safe and effect basic care to patients (Technology).
  • Demonstrate readiness to enter the healthcare workforce by showing competence in basic nursing knowledge and skills and behavioral skills such as accountability, commitment, responsibility, reliability (Employability).

Students can enroll in this program full-time (FT) or part-time (PT). Students must successfully complete each of the below courses in the FT or PT option to earn a Patient Care Assistant (PCA) Certificate


This program is designed to provide students with introductory skills necessary to function as a patient care assistant (PCA) in a variety of healthcare settings. Students learn valuable technical skills through in class instruction, hands-on lab experience and opportunities to work in local healthcare facilities. 

The Patient Care Assistant helps patients with activities of daily living and other healthcare needs under the direct supervision of a Registered Nurse (RN) or Trained Clinical Nurse (TCN). PCA’s are also commonly referred to as a Nursing Assistant or a Nurse’s Aide.

Upon successful completion, graduates can expect to find employment opportunities in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, clinics, doctor’s offices and other healthcare related facilities.


Required Courses

  • Healthcare and Employability Skills
  • Nursing and Home Health Assistant
  • Medication Administration Assistant
  • Patient Care Assistant in Hospital Settings


Admission Requirements

  1.  Applicants must be 17 years or older.
  2.  Applicants must have a high school diploma or GED and Bahamas Junor Certificates (BJC) in English and Math within the last five (5) years with a grade of “C” or above. If BJCs are older than five (5) years, then completion of college prep courses in English and Math with a grade of “C” and above
  3. Applicants without a high school diploma must complete college prep courses in English and Math with a grade of “C” or above.



Admission Process

  1. Complete BIBT’s Admission Application by visiting Applying for Admission (
  2. Submit completed application with supporting documents such as (government issued identification), official transcripts of all BJC’s prior college prep or college level courses to the Director of Admissions at BIBT, Nassau N. P., Bahamas at least three (3) months prior to the trimester in which you wish to start the program.

      NOTE: Prospective students wishing to attend classes in Freeport should apply directly to the Freeport campus once the program               becomes available in Grand Bahama.

3. Complete an interview with the School of Allied Health Sciences to determine your preparedness for the program

4. Complete the PCA program Supplemental Application located at the back of this packet and submit it along with unofficial transcripts for BJC’s and prior coursework to the attention of the Coordinator of the PCA program at BIBT’s address listed above at least three (3) months prior to the trimester in which you wish to start the program.

5. Two (2) letters of reference from prior or current teachers or clergy (see template at the end of this application.
6. Submit the following clinical requirements to the PCA Program Coordinator before the start of the first course.

NOTE: Students cannot attend clinical in healthcare institutions and in patients’ homes without the below requirements:

  •  Clean Police Record within the past three (3) months
  • Physical Exam within the last six (6) months documenting absence of lifting restrictions, physical and mental/emotional stability for at least one (1) full year prior to program admission from a licensed physician
  •  Negative 10-Panel drug & alcohol screening check within one (1) month from a licensed physician
  •  Negative TB (PPD) 2 step or chest x-ray within one (1) year from a licensed physician
  •  Required immunizations (Covid-19 or waiver, Hepatitis B series of 3 or Titer or signed waiver, MMR series of 2 or Titer, DTaP or TDaP, Varicella series of 2 or Titer, and seasonal flu shot) from a licensed physician
  • Participate in a mandatory new PCA student orientation


Program Schedule:

Total Program Length: Full-time = 16 Weeks Part-Time = 32 Weeks

Total # of Contact Hours 392

Didactic/Theory = 176

Skills/Simulation Lab = 136

Clinical Practicum = 80

Start Date: To be determined by the Office of the Dean


Program Cost

One-time Application Fee $50.00                                   Registration Fee (per term) $20.00

Course Fee
Healthcare Career and Employability Skills  $420.00
Nursing and Home Health Assistant    $540.00
Medication Administration Assistant  $420.00
Patient Care in Hospital Settings    $540.00



Books (Not included: Estimated Cost $400 - $600)

Incidental Fees      (Not included: Estimated Cost $600 - $800)

(Physical exam, police record, drug tests, uniform, shoes, watch, labs, school supplies, etc)