Certificate in Health Support Services VSC005

Study Learn and work in Health Support

Passionate about the Health Industry?

  • Learn skills to start working in a valued role, supporting medical practitioners.
  • Flexible learning: Start your course whenever suits you and Study at your own pace.

Course Duration: 600 hours

You must successfully complete all assignments and pass a sit down exam for most modules in order to gain a module credit.
If any of these requirements is not satisfactorily completed, you may resubmit until satisfied.
Note: An exam fee apples each time you sit an exam (additional to course fees)
You need 6 module credits before the qualification is awarded

Module Requirements
You need to complete the following:

  • Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • Medical Terminology
  • Cell Biology
  • Human Nutrition I
  • Management
  • Research Project I

Module Outlines

Human Anatomy and Physiology

This course provides a solid introduction to human biology:, covering cells, tissues, membranes, the skeleton, the digestive system, the endocrine system, respiration, reproduction, the excretory system, muscles, the nervous system and the circulatory system. There are 6 lessons as follows:

  1. Cells & Tissues - Explains the human body at a microscopic level, including the structure and function of cells, tissues and membranes.
  2. The Skeleton - Examines features of the human skeletal system.
  3. The Muscular System -Describes the human muscular system, in terms of structure and basic function.
  4. The Nervous System – Looks at the human nervous system, in terms of structure and basic functions.
  5. Digestion & Excretion -Explains different physiological systems of digestion and excretion in the body.
  6. Physiological Systems –Focuses on the different physiological systems of the body.

 Medical Terminology
 The course is divided into 10 lessons as follows:
1. Scope and Nature of Medical Terminology
2. Anatomical Structure
3. Medical Equipment and Procedures
4. Pharmacological Terminology
5. Musculoskeletal System
6. Cardiovascular, Lymphatic and Immune Systems
7. Respiratory and Reproductive Systems
8. Digestive and Excretory Systems
9. Integumentary System (Skin)
10. Nervous and Sensory Systems

Cell Biology
An essential foundation course for all people interested in biology, whether human, animal or plant.
The cell is the basic unit of life.  Its knowledge is most essential to understand how life works for all animals. This course contains 11 lessons as follows:

  1. Introduction to Cells
  2. Chemical Composition
  3. Chemical Processes
  4. Genetic Information
  5. Membranes
  6. Nucleus
  7. Protein Structure and Function in the Cell
  8. Bioenergetics
  9. Cell Signaling/Communication
  10. The Cell Cycle
  11. Tissues
Human Nutrition I
This develops an understanding of the sources, actions, and interactions of nutrients from the food that we consume. Looking at the balance of the nutrients in foods and what makes up a balanced diet. It is excellent for anyone interested in nutrition and health for themselves or to help or counsel others.
More than just a collection of information; this is a carefully developed program developed and tutored by university trained and experienced nutritional scientists; providing a sequence of learning experiences, including interaction one on one with our highly qualifed tutors.

There are seven lessons in this module as follows:
  1. Introduction and Organisational Structures
  2. Management Theories and Procedures
  3. Problem Solving and Decision Making
  4. Management Styles and External Influences
  5. Employing People and Interview Skills
  6. Staff Management
  7. Ethics and Equity
Research Project I
There are seven lessons as follows:
  1. Determining Research Needs
  2. Research Methods
  3. Using Statistics
  4. Research Reports
  5. Searching For Information
  6. Conducting Statistical Research
  7. Reporting On A Research Project


How You Learn

There is a logical process involved for you to develop a foundation for working effectively in health support services. It starts with systematically learning about the tings that make up the human body (first the cells, then the types of tissues, the organs and so forth).

As you build this knowledge, your ability to understand the terminology used in health services and the medical industries will also build. There are many things that a health support worker can learn on the job; but it will always be more difficult to learn at work if you cannot understand the words being used by your employer and fellow workers. This is why learning the terminology and underlying human biology is critical; and why employers are always going to prefer to employ support staff with that knowledge.

Beyond these things; this course also gives you an understanding of management (important to efficient operation of any workplace), and research skills (so you know how to go about seeking and finding information when needed, in an industry which is continually and rapidly changing).

Six hundred hours of study won't make you an expert; but it will teach you a great deal more than shorter courses, and position you with knowledge and skills that can be invaluable for building a career, with or without further studies.



There are more jobs on offer in the health industry than just being either a doctor or nurse. In fact, most people in the health care industries probably work as health support staff, supplying equipment or services in support of the practitioners.

Examples might include working in medical administration, sales, insurance, research, publishing, catering, rehabilitation, etc.

Here are some examples of how someone might get started:

How to become a Medical Sales Representative
There are no qualification requirements to become a medical sales representative, however it is preferred to have some general education in medical terminology, health science, marketing, communication, and customer service. This can be obtained either through a significant course of study, or a combination of study and experience in a role that utilises some of the necessary skills. Most companies will provide in depth training in relation to their specific products.

A medical sales representative will need to develop their skills to a level where they have a sound understanding of health sciences, and an ability to effectively communicate scientific material.

The medical Sales representative will need to be well-presented and have good communication and interpersonal skills to gain rapport with their clients. They will also need to develop good sales closing skills.

How to become a Medical and Health Care Receptionist
The main skills necessary for a medical and health care receptionist are office skills. These can be developed through experience, as well as through education. There are many vocational education courses that may be appropriate.

A knowledge of health sciences and medical terminology will also be advantageous to aid with comprehension and communication within the clinic. Again there are a number of vocational short courses that will provide this knowledge.

First aid and CPR training will be useful and may be essential.

You will need to develop an attitude of empathetic caring, whilst remaining calm in stressful situations.

How to become a Horticultural Therapist
To become a horticultural therapist you will need a range of skills.
You will need to have knowledge about horticulture, in order to design and run an appropriate programme that will have the desired outcomes. You will need to know what is needed to grow the plants that you are working with so you can teach theses skills to the participants in your programme.

You will also need to have counselling skills, in order to ensure the process is therapeutic for your participants. This will also allow you to effectively deal with any of the issues that arise for your clients to ensure an optimal level of care.

As well as these, if you are running your own business you will need to develop business management skills. You may be applying for government funding and grants, so you will also need to develop an understanding for what is available, the requirements, and how to submit an application.

How to become a Welfare Worker

The type of job role you wish to obtain will determine the level of qualification that is needed. Often college or vocational certificate or diploma may be all that is needed, however some jobs may require a university qualification. As with many of the “care” professions; welfare workers can often ”evolve” into a job, if they have inherent skills and temperament that complements a position they encounter.

Volunteering or gaining work experience in the area will help your chances to gain employment. There is generally great demand for “carer” type roles in elderly, disabilities, mental health, and with youth. You may find that you can obtain a job in this role while you are studying, then progress into supervisory, case management, team leader, and other welfare roles from there.

There are also Welfare Worker associations that you may be eligible to join.

Some of the personal skills that you will need to succeed are:

  • An ability to think rationally and problem solve
  • An ability to be empathetic with your clients, but still remain detached
  • Good communication skills
  • Ability to cope with stressful situations and conflict
  • Genuine care for other’s wellbeing



All living matter is composed of functional units called cells. At one end of the scale in the animal kingdom, there are unicellular organisms composed of a single cell (eg. Protozoa or Amoeba). In an amoeba all the vital processes of the animal take place inside a single cell.

Cells are capable of digesting food, growing, respiring, excreting, secreting, reproducing and responding to stimuli. All these things happen in a single-celled animal.

At the other end of the scale, there are the multi-cellular organisms such as the higher animals and humans. In these organisms, the cells become specialised, and one or more of these different functions may be lost. The various parts of the animal cell and their functions are:

  • Cell membrane. This is the outer layer of the cell. It gives the cell its shape and holds the liquid inside the cell. It is semi-permeable which means it allows certain things to pass in and out of the cell. The membrane itself is a phospholipid bilayer.
  • Nucleus. This is the part of the cell which holds the genetic material, the chromosomes and chromatin which are concerned with reproduction of the cell. Inside the nucleus is the suborganelle known as the nucleolus, which functions to make and assemble ribosomes.
  • Cytoplasm. This is the water based fluid inside the cell which contains salts and other ions and molecules suspended in solution. Within the cytoplasm you will find filaments, proteins, organelles and vesicles.
  • Cytoskeleton. A network of protein filaments in the cytoplasm that provide a structural framework for the cell, and it is responsible for cell movements.
  • Golgi apparatus. This is essentially a large folding membrane. It serves as a processing factory within the cell, primarily working on proteins and lipids. It also packages macromolecules for transport to other regions of the cell, or for secretion.
  • Lysosomes. These organelles contain powerful enzymes known as hydrolases that break down food molecules, old or unwanted organelles and even invading pathogens.
  • Ribosomes. Ribosomes are tiny, roughly spherical structures attached to the rough endoplasmic reticulum. They are involved in the synthesis of proteins. They also occur free in the cytoplasm.
  • Centriole. This is concerned with cell division, the reproduction of the cell and the movement of cell chromosomes.
  • Mitochondrion. Mitochondria (plural of mitochondrion = mitochondria) are concerned with the respiration of the cell. Respiration produces energy for the cell. These are the cell’s powerhouses.
  • Endoplasmic reticulum. Another membrane organelle that associates with the nuclear membrane. Serves a variety of functions, the most important being protein synthesis and folding. Some proteins move on to the Golgi for more modification and final packaging.
  • Peroxisomes. These organelles contain peroxides that digest lipids and some other foods.
  • Fibrils. These are concerned with nervous responses.
  • Glycogen. A complex polymer of glucose that acts as a storage/supply of glucose in the liver and muscle cells.
  • Microfilament. Protein filaments that give shape, support and movement in non-muscle cells, and form the contractile units of muscle cells.
  • Secretory vesicle. A tiny sac inside the cell that contain molecules for secretion to the outside environment. These may be waste materials, or hormones, or other molecules with important function outside of the cell that produced them.

Although the cell is very, very small, you can see that it contains many different parts and can perform an array of functions.

Humans are multi-cellular organisms. The single cells, many of which are specialised so that they can perform a particular function, are grouped together to form tissues. These tissues in turn form special groups called organs. The groups of organs make up a system, and the systems join together to form a living body.


There are five basic types of tissue found in humans:

  • Epithelial tissues
  • Connective tissues
  • Fluid tissues
  • Muscle tissues
  • Nervous tissues


A wide range of 

  • Receptionists or administration officers in a health centre, gym, therapists rooms or any health related business
  • Health or medical products marketing staff
  • Retail staff in a health food shop
  • Carers, or staff in a care facility
  • Students of human biology, health or human wellbeing

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Fee Information (CT)
Prices in Australian Dollars

PlanAust. PriceOverseas Price
A 1 x $3,605.80  1 x $3,278.00
B 2 x $1,945.90  2 x $1,769.00
C 4 x $1,049.40  4 x $954.00

Note: Australian prices include GST. 
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