NZ Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Advanced Support) Level 4 - Online

30 weeks
Level 4
74 credits
$27 per hour (salary expectation)
  • Course Information
  • FAQs
  • Industry Info
11 July 2022, 15 August 2022, 19 September 2022, 24 October 2022

Working in the healthcare sector already, but want to get your Level 4 qualification and gain a pay rise through pay equity? Upskill after hours with Ignite Colleges’ new Level 4 online Healthcare programme. You’ll get plenty of support from tutors and classmates through group chats,online discussions and face to face sessions . This is the ideal way to keep working, gain a qualification and advance your career.

Who can enrol?

If you are 16 years or older, already working in the healthcare sector and keen to upskill, this programme will enable you to provide advanced support to a person or family/whanau with complex needs.

What will I learn?

Gain the skills you need to fast-track your career, working as a healthcare assistant, senior caregiver or senior support worker in healthcare facilities, hospices or specialised dementia units. Build rapport with classmates through online discussions and benefit from one-on-one tutor support via email, phone and drop in sessions at our campus.

You will cover:

  • Risk management plans
  • Models of service delivery
  • Providing support to those with complex needs (e.g. dementia, palliative care)
  • Leadership and teamwork
  • Self-reflection and peer mentoring

What qualifications will I gain?

New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Advanced Support) Level 4

Where will this take me?

With this qualification you can apply for a wide range of well-paid healthcare roles including District Health Board positions. Alternatively, you can pathway into nursing and further healthcare studies. Either way you’ll stand out from the crowd by having trained at Ignite Colleges!

Here are some Frequently Asked Questions about this course

How many credits will I receive?

The New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing Level 4 (Advanced Support) is NZQA-approved and worth 74 credits.

Is this qualification recognised for pay equity in the health sector?

Yes, it is.

How long will it take me to complete?

This is a 30-week distance course.

Are student loans and allowances available?

Yes, this programme is approved for loans and allowances if studied full-time.

Please speak to our Student Services Team (0800 200 345) to find out if you are eligible.

What do I need to have to apply?

You need to be at least 16 years old, have an interview with the Student Services Team and have completed the New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Level 3) OR an equivalent qualification OR have experience in the health and wellbeing sector. Please call the Student Services Team on 0800 200 345 to find out how to enrol.

Do I need to be employed in the Health and Wellbeing sector to do this distance programme?

Yes, your employer will need to fill out a simple form as part of the enrolment process. If you are not working, you can complete the programme by attending classes at Ignite Colleges.

I’ve never done online distance learning before and worry about not having classmates to talk to. Can I speak to my tutor or other students?

Yes, there are online discussions you will participate in that involve other students in your class. You will also be able to speak to your tutor on the phone and contact your tutor by email.

Because I’m working shifts will I miss some of the scheduled sessions?

There will be a few different sessions that you can participate in. You will also have online access to any content missed.

Will I be able to manage my time?

Please speak to the Student Services Team on 0800 200 345 to discuss how to manage your time and balance study with your other commitments.

What devices and access do I need?

You need to have:

  • a mobile phone
  • access to a computer or a laptop
  • a Gmail address
  • access to the internet
  • a Facebook account

Do I need to have computer skills?

  • You need to have basic computer and internet skills to participate effectively in this course.
  • You will be required to undertake basic searches using Google, YouTube or others.
  • You will need to use Microsoft Word to complete assignments.

Healthcare workers provide assistance, support and care to people in need (such as the aged or disabled) in a wide range of health, welfare, residential and community settings. The work they do fills a crucial role in society and is becoming even more critical as New Zealand’s population becomes increasingly older.

By 2021, 34,547 people are estimated to be working as personal carers and assistants in New Zealand – that’s up 0.9 percent from 2013. Employment in the sector is expected to remain stable out to 2026. According to a 2015 Ministry of Health survey, healthcare support workers are predominantly female (91 percent) and have an older age profile than other New Zealand workforces, with 54 percent of workers aged between 45 and 64. In addition, the survey found most support workers were employed part-time, working an average of 21 hours a week. Late nights, early mornings, weekend and shift work is common.

What makes a great healthcare worker?

Most people enter the healthcare sector because they are passionate about helping others and dedicated to making a meaningful difference in their communities. Having empathy and a kind and caring nature is a must. But there are several other skills and traits that help to make an exceptional healthcare worker. These include:

  • good customer service skills
  • first-aid knowledge
  • knowledge of health and safety standards
  • patient, tolerant and compassionate
  • practical
  • organised and responsible
  • skilled at listening and communicating
  • able to relate well to people from a range of cultures
  • able to follow instructions
  • fit, healthy, strong and free of back problems

Employment opportunities

Employment opportunities for healthcare support workers are good, thanks primarily to New Zealand’s aging population, and the increasing demand this is putting on our healthcare services. And while many care workers are employed in hospitals and nursing homes, there are also excellent opportunities in private home care companies, specialist care providers, church and welfare-based trusts, and home support services run by District Health Boards (DHBs).

In 2017, pay equity in the sector took a giant leap forward, with the passing of the Care and Support Worker (Pay Equity) Settlement Act, which removed wage discrimination based on gender for 55,000 care and support workers – and led to pay rises of 15-50 percent. Linking pay rates to qualifications, the Act encourages workers to increase their qualifications, and helps New Zealand build a more highly training workforce.

The new wage rates are being rolled out over five years and as of July 2018, healthcare support workers with a Level 2 qualification earn $21.50/hour (the same as an unqualified person who has been working in the sector for three years); those with a Level 3 qualification start on $23/hour (the equivalent of someone who’s been working for eight years); and a Level 4 qualification starts you on $25.50/hour, the same as an unqualified worker who has been in the sector for 12 years.

Entry-level roles in the health sector include:

  • caregiver
  • healthcare assistant
  • home care support worker
  • hospital orderly
  • nurse aide
  • nursing support and care worker
  • personal care assistant

Once in the industry, there are plenty of opportunities for progression and specialisation. Go onto degree-level studies and become a registered nurse, become a health promoter in the local community or within a government agency, or move into an administrative or managerial role in a hospital or private healthcare organisation.


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