Certificate III in Aboriginal and-or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care
Certificate III may be regarded by many jurisdictions as the minimum level for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander health work. In some jurisdictions, however, individuals may start at Certificate II level and when ready progress to Certificate III. The qualification structure for Certificate III supports both these options. This qualification is suited to Australian Apprenticeship pathways.
Certificate III in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care covers workers who provide health care services to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients, usually as part of a team, with ongoing supervision and guidance. Occupational titles for these workers may include, for example:
Aboriginal health worker
Torres Strait Islander health worker
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health work is an emerging area of work and occupational titles for those working in this area vary according to jurisdictional and workplace requirements.
All workers are to be given the opportunity to have their competencies recognised prior to undertaking any training. Assessment should focus on demonstration of the critical aspects of evidence and underpinning knowledge and skills identified in the units of competency.
At Certificate III the level of English literacy/numeracy must:
support clear communication between Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and the relevant health provider
enable performance of tasks to the level defined in the unit of competency
Assessment methods must reflect the actual skills and knowledge defined in each unit of competency. Assessment tasks involving literacy and numeracy must only be used in so far as the same level of literacy/numeracy is required to perform the function being assessed.
To be assessed as competent in this qualification, individual workers are required to undertake supervised work placements in a primary health care setting, supplemented by simulated practical application of skills and knowledge. Individuals must demonstrate consistency of performance over time to achieve competency outcomes.
The importance of culturally aware and respectful practice
All workers undertaking work in health need foundation knowledge to inform their work with Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and co-workers and with clients and co-workers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. This foundation must be provided and assessed as part of a holistic approach to delivery and assessment of this qualification. Specific guidelines for assessment of this aspect of competency are provided in the Assessment Guidelines for the Health Training Package.