Healthcare is one of the fastest growing industries in the US with a demand for multi-skilled health occupation employees. To meet this challenge, students in the Northeast Health Assistant program study the therapeutic, diagnostic, and administrative areas of the health professions with an emphasis on Nurse Assisting and Medical Office Assisting. Students are given theoretical and practical instruction in the laboratory and clinical experience in area healthcare facilities. The rigorous curriculum is aligned with the standards and requirements of the Department of Public Health and the MA DESE frameworks. Medical related sciences are integrated into the Health Assistant curriculum. These include anatomy and physiology, nutrition, and biology. Medical Terminology, Introduction to Electrocardiography, Introduction to Phlebotomy and a thirty hour Home Care Aide course are taught during the student’s Health Assisting career. The students are prepared to test for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health certification exam for Nurse Assistants. Many Health Assistant students pursue post-secondary education to continue their education in Nursing or Allied Health.
Upon graduation, students are employable as:
- C.N.A. (Certified Nursing Assistant)
- Medical Assistant
- Home Health Aide
- Dietary Aide
Technical and Higher Education Majors
- Licensed Practical Nurse
- Certified Clinical Medical Assistant
- Medical Administrative Assistant
- Registered Nurse
- Occupational Therapy Assistant
- Physical Therapy Assistant
- Radiologic Technology
- Respiratory Technology Animal Care Specialist
- Veterinary Technology
Health Occupations are some of the fastest-growing industries in the US with a demand for multi-skilled healthcare workers. Students in Health Assisting study therapeutic, diagnostic and administrative areas of the health professions with an emphasis on Nurse Assisting and Medical Assisting. Students are given theoretical and practical instruction in the laboratory and clinical experience in healthcare facilities. Related sciences are integrated into the curriculum including: anatomy and physiology, nutrition and biology. Medical Terminology, Introduction to Electrocardiography, Introduction to Phlebotomy and a 30 hour Home Care Aide course are part of the curriculum. Students are prepared to test for the MA Department of Public Health certification exam for Nurse Assistants (C.N.A.) and can start working immediately upon licensing. Many Health Assistant students pursue post-secondary education to continue their education in Nursing or Allied Health. Further education and specific instructional programs are needed to prepare individuals to practice as licensed professionals.
Connections to Work and Higher Education
Industry Affiliations: SKILLS USA, C.N.A. Program is Department of Public Health Accredited
Industry Certifications Available in High School
- OSHA for Healthcare Industry – 10 hrs (OSHA G10)
- Alzheimer’s Association: Caring for People with Alzheimer’s Disease Certificate
- AHA First Aid/CPR/AED
- AHA Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers
- Introduction to Phlebotomy
- Introduction to Electrocardiogram
- MA Nurse Assistant Certification Exam (pending)
- Home Health Aide Crossover
- Emergency Medical Response (EMR)
College Credits toward post-secondary certifications/degrees can be earned through Articulation Agreements with:
- MA State Agreement with HA: CNA – Certified Nursing Assistant
- MA State Agreement Medical Assisting: One or more Medical Assisting courses
- North Shore Community College
- OFT 116 Medical Terminology – 3 credits
- ALH 134 Certified Nursing Assistant – 5 credits
- BIO 108 The Body in Health and Disease
- (HA major and Honors Anatomy & Physiology)
Grade 9 Exploratory – Course #HAX
The Health Assistant program offers the exploratory student an overview of healthcare professions and the various occupations available in the field. The students are taught safety in the healthcare environment, CPR, first aid, infection control, basic anatomy and physiology, and nutrition. Freshmen participate in a visit to a local Geriatric Adult Day Health Center. Freshman students in Health Assisting study medical math. Medical math is a competence necessary to be successful as a healthcare employee. The curriculum helps prepare the student for the MCAS exam.
Grade 9 Shop – Course #HAXF-16
Freshman students begin their Health Assistant course of studies in the fourth quarter. The goal for the students in the ninth grade is the attainment of introductory knowledge and the pre-care skills necessary to begin the Nurse Aide curriculum. The students volunteer one day each week at an Adult Day Health Center. The Health Assistant curriculum includes roles and responsibilities of the healthcare worker, Introduction to nutrition, introduction to infection control and team /group effectiveness and understanding dementia. Freshman students are introduced to the language of medicine and the three-year sequential course of medical terminology. Students begin studying the basic structure of the human body.
Grade 10 Shop – Course #HA2
The sophomore students begin the Nurse Aide curriculum and work in the skills lab, the clinical setting and the classroom. The students are immersed in a course of studies which includes Fundamentals of Nurse Assisting, Medical Office Administration, Therapeutic Nutrition, Gerontology, First Aide and computer skills. The students acquire nurse assisting clinical skills through practice in the nursing laboratory and a supervised internship at Chelsea Soldiers Home Facility. OSHA Certification, Red Cross, First Aid/CPR/AED and Alzheimer’s Association: Caring for People with Alzheimer’s Disease Certification.
Grade 10 Related – Course #HA2R
Medical Terminology is a three-year sequential course taught in Health Assisting. The course is designed to give the student the knowledge of medical language. Competency in medical terminology is a necessary skill for employment in the healthcare profession. This is an anatomy and physiology systems-based course. During the sophomore year, students study the structure and function of the human body, medical abbreviations, medical word roots, prefixes and suffixes. Students are taught anatomy and physiology, diagnostic, therapeutic and pathology terms of the special senses, reproductive and integumentary systems.
Grade 11 Shop – Course #HA3
Junior students participate in a one-semester rigorous nurse aide training and review course which includes a lab component. Students apply their skills in the clinical area at Wingate Long Term Care and Glen Ridge Nursing Care Center. Students are under the direct supervision of a Registered Nurse instructor. Upon successful completion of the Nurse Assistant course, the student is eligible to take the Massachusetts Certification Exam to be licensed as a Certified Nurse Assistant and placed on the Department of Public Health’s Registry of licensed CNA’ s. The junior student also participates in a one-semester Medical Office Assistant course. Administrative skills and clinical procedures are practiced in the lab and developed in the clinical setting at East Boston Neighborhood Health Center. During the eleventh grade, the students also study Introduction to Electrocardiography and are certified in American Heart Association CPR/AED. Students who successfully complete the Nurse Aide course with a B average are eligible for college credits through our articulation agreement with local community colleges.
Grade 11 Related – Course #HA3R
During the second year of medical terminology, junior students study anatomy and physiology, diagnostic, therapeutic and pathology terms of the cardiac, musculoskeletal and urinary systems. Students begin their research for the Junior/Senior Project graduation requirement.
Grade 12 Shop – Course #HA4
Seniors in the Health Assistant program participate in a supervised clinical internship three days a week at Whidden Hospital where they develop advanced nurse assisting skills. The students study the pathology and treatment of the patient in acute care. Students complete a Home Health Aide course, an Introduction to Phlebotomy course and the NEFE financial curriculum. Senior students in Health Assisting, if eligible, may participate in the Cooperative Education program.
Grade 12 Related – Course #HA4R
During the third year of Medical Terminology, senior students study anatomy and physiology, diagnostic, therapeutic and pathology terms of the respiratory, digestive, endocrine and nervous systems. Students work throughout the year researching and completing the Senior Project. Students who maintain an overall B average for the three-year course are eligible for three credits from North Shore CC through the Health Assisting articulation program with the college.