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Advanced Medication Certificate and its Benefits

If you already have a certificate or work as a Health Care Aide, you may want to consider getting additional course certifications. Advanced Medication is one that will give you an upper hand in the industry as it teaches you how to assist with medication delivery and will expand your abilities to work in assisted living facilities, home support agencies and long-term living facilities. 

In Canada, nearly every minute someone is injured from unintended harm. Most of these issues result from mistakes when giving medication, whether it’s the wrong prescription, wrong dose, or not accounting for allergies. With this certificate, you can help avoid such fatal problems. 

What the Advanced Medication course teaches you 

The Advanced Medication Certificate builds on module six of the Health Care Aide curriculum created by Alberta Health Services and will teach you concepts such as: 

  • How to safely assist clients with taking their medication
  • Broader categories of medication and its effects on the human body 
  • What risks are involved and how to deal with complications incase any errors occur
  • How to draw insulin with a syringe 
  • How to assist with inhalers and use them appropriately 
  • Additional guidelines to assist elderly clients in their home 
  • Observing, recording and reporting skills 

This course is offered for Health Care Aide students at ABM College and runs for 14 hours over the weekend, with demonstrations and practical exercises. 

Difference between medication assistance and administration 

According to Alberta Health Services, there’s key differences between assisting and administering medication in the scope of a health care aide. 

Assisting is when you make sure a client is taking the prescription the way it was intended, safely and appropriately. It can include providing the medication to the client for ingestion, application or injection. There can be a range of actions involved, from simply giving a gentle reminder to full hands-on engagement and observation, depending on the circumstances.  

Administering is the action of supplying a dose of medication for various purposes to the client. It involves not just giving the medication to the client, but making clinical decisions and planning care based on assessment of the dose. This role is often reserved for nurses and beyond what a health care aide can do. 

Why Advanced Medication is beneficial

There’s many benefits to adding the Advanced Medication Certificate to your skillset as a Health Care Aide. Getting the certificate increases your knowledge and the breadth of your ability to practice assisting others. 

If your client ever happens to be in an emergency regarding their medication, you can be confident that you have the knowledge and skills to help them out in that scenario. It helps to mitigate the risks of harm when it comes to patient or client care. When you’re faced with a difficult situation, you’ll be able to exercise better judgement and act accordingly. 

It also makes you more employable as a health care aide, as it gives you expertise that other health care aides may not have. It opens up your career opportunities because there are jobs in the market that require health care aides to know how to assist or administer certain medications to clients. Due to having this extra skill, you may be able to take on additional duties and possibly advance in your career faster than others. 

As a health care aide, you are an integral healthcare worker, assisting clients to meet their needs. The more you can enhance your talents to do that, the better you will be able to take care of your clients, especially those who need ongoing support. Learning about Advanced Medication is definitely a part of that. 

Last updated April 2021*

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