Entry-level career options in health science

Woman typing codeIf you are considering a Health Science diploma, you may not have planned for additional studies at the degree or diploma level. Some students are just interested in the fields of health and science and would like to learn more and apply their learning in the workforce. Although many heath careers require advanced degrees or specialized diplomas, there are some entry-level career options.

The Health Science program can prepare you to become a medical doctor by qualifying you to attend the Xavier University School of Medicine (XUSOM). However, it can also serve as an introduction to Health Science that you can use in an entry-level position.

What entry-level career options are available

Many people with health science diplomas or degrees work in positions such as:

Health care administration: Hospitals and clinics don’t rely solely on doctors and nurses to operate. Behind the scenes are administrative positions that take care of clerical tasks, accounting, procurement, marketing, transcription and reports and much more. Skilled administrators can rise through the ranks to management positions.

Sales: Pharmaceutical and medical equipment companies rely on sales people to develop specialized knowledge of their products and to communicate that knowledge effectively to patients, doctors, clinics, hospitals and others. If you have good presentation skills, you may enjoy working in sales.

Writing and editing: Journals, newspapers and science-based publications need people with knowledge of health to fact-check, edit and write articles on health science issues.

Non-profit: There are numerous health-related non-profits in Canada. These include charities that provide supports to people living with disease or charities that provide research and fund programs. They need people to do research, write papers, deliver presentations, perform administrative tasks, and work in communications.

Public health: Public Health agencies focus on prevention of disease. They may hire people with health and science knowledge as researchers, report writers, or even educators to go out and talk to the community. They may hire inspectors to ensure that businesses and public facilities are being run safely.

Laboratory: Entry-level jobs in laboratories include lab assistant and lab technician. These involve collecting samples, operating equipment and updating medical records.

Insurance companies: Insurance companies require people with medical knowledge to write reports, analyze information, assist with investigations, provide customer service and communications.

Government: Governments fund many of the activities that relate to health in Canada, and provide some research and services themselves. There are numerous opportunities for researchers, writers, communication experts, administrators and others in governments of all levels.

These are some of the entry-level career options you may be qualified for with a diploma in Health Sciences. After working in a field, you may have a greater awareness of where you would like to work, in which case, you may return to college or university for more specialization. Who knows, you may even decide to attend medical school or become a nurse or pharmacist one day.

A diploma in Health Science is a great way to find out your options and get started on the path to an exciting career. To find out if the Health Science diploma program at Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) is right for you, contact us today for more information.


Medical office assistant courses at ACI

Students studying medical office assistant coursesAlthough it is possible to become a medical office assistant without specialized training, most job postings will require a post-secondary diploma or certificate. This is because the tasks of a medical office assistant require certain knowledge and training that would be difficult to obtain solely on the job. Medical office assistant courses include training in medical procedures, billing and bookkeeping.

The diploma program at Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) will give you the medical office assistant courses you need to be successful. As well, you will complete a practicum, so that you feel comfortable on the job when it’s time to get hired.

Required medical office assistant courses

You may already have some skills that will help you in your role as a Medical Office Assistant, such as typing and using Microsoft Office. You may have worked in offices before and have experience with answering the phone and providing customer service. However, there are other more specialized skills you can learn through medical office assistant courses.

Electronic Medical Record Software – Many patient records in today’s office environment are maintained electronically. This helps to ensure efficiency and provide better care to the patient. An office assistant needs to learn how to manage these records using the latest software. ACI’s Medical Billing course includes an introduction to the Oscar Electronic Medical Record computer software program.

Medical terminology – In order to communicate effectively with doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals, you will need to understand the terminology used in the medical field. This information will be useful in ordering tests, scheduling, writing reports and other tasks. Learning to be fluent in this terminology will ensure accuracy and help you assist with delivering high quality patient care. You will learn medical terminology in your Medical Science and Transcription courses.

Medical transcription – You may be required to produce reports based on the doctor’s information such as dictation or hand-written notes. This is called medical transcription. This information must be formatted and entered electronically. Medical transcription courses will teach you both the terminology and the procedures.

Clinical procedures – Although a medical office assistant can’t treat patients, they may be required to perform certain clinical procedures. You will learn about basic laboratory tests, medical office equipment, measuring and charting vital signs and how to prepare the exam room. This information will be included in your Medical Office Procedures course at ACI.

Practicum – Practicums are an essential part of medical office assistant courses. It will allow you to see how the knowledge gained in your program is used in the real world. You will get a feel for the procedures of a office and your role in helping to make sure everything runs smoothly. You will also learn how to multi-task effectively as most offices are very busy places. When you start your first job, you’ll have some experience and feel more confident that you have the skills to handle the challenges ahead.

As you can see there is a lot of specialized learning that takes place, before one can become a confident medical office assistant. However, taking medical office assistant courses doesn’t need to take you away from the workplace for years. The Medical Office Assistant program at ACI is only 22.5 weeks.

If you want to become a confident Medical Office Assistant, contact ACI today to find out if the medical office assistant program is right for you.



Aruba medical school: How to attend

Port of ArubaAttending medical school in Aruba can be an excellent way to achieve your goals of becoming a doctor in the United States or Canada. Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) can help you get there.

How can ACI help you attend medical school in Aruba?

ACI, located in Burnaby, British Columbia, has developed a partnership with Xavier University School of Medicine (XUSOM) in Aruba, to help more Canadian students become doctors. ACI’s Health Sciences diploma program provides the pre-medicine coursework you need to qualify to attend XUSOM.

Once you have successfully completed the coursework at ACI, you will be approved to enter the medical program at XUSOM with no MCAT required.

XUSOM students from Canada can qualify for Canadian provincial student loans, such as OSAP.

Where is XUSOM located?

XUSOM is located in the capital city of Aruba, Oranjestad. This is convenient for students, because it can be accessed by direct flight. The campus has the modern amenities you require as a student, including security, wireless, and air conditioning.

Aruba has a pleasant dry and sunny climate with white sand beaches. Although your program will be intensive, you may find time for walking, jogging, biking, and sightseeing. Food and lodging in Oranjestad can be found in the range of $900 to $1,200. However, you can save money by finding a roommate.

What is the program at XUSOM like?

XUSOM is a fully accredited medical school in Aruba providing a four-year curriculum. The first two years you will spend in Aruba completing the basic science coursework. The types of learning you will be exposed to include:

  • Lectures
  • Laboratory work
  • Small group discussion
  • Computer-assisted learning

You will spend the last two years completing clerkships in hospitals in the United States.

Once you complete your studies, you will be qualified to practice medicine in Canada or the USA.

Why attend medical school in Aruba?

Medical school in Aruba is based on the North American standard, which is why it is a popular destination for Canadian students.

Every year hundreds of qualified Canadian students are turned away from Canadian medical schools due to a limited number of spots. Accelerated Career Institute, in partnership with XUSOM, gives qualified students an opportunity to achieve their goal of becoming a medical doctor.

If you would like to find out if attending medical school in Aruba is right for you, contact Accelerated Career Institute today for more information.

Skills a medical office assistant needs

Medical office assistant works on computer skillsA medical office assistant requires many skills to be successful. Some you may already have. Some require education and some you will learn on the job.

Because the day-to-day tasks of a medical office assistant are varied, you will need a variety of competencies such as administrationand “soft” skills.

What skills do you need?

Here is what you need to demonstrate to become a successful medical office assistant:

Communication: As a medical office assistant, you will be the first point of contact for patients. You will need to be able to take down their information accurately, collect billing or insurance information, show them into the exam room and take their vital signs. In many cases you will be dealing with people who are sick, in pain and possibly upset. You’ll need to be able to remain calm and reassuring under pressure. You should be able to communicate well in person, on the phone and in emails.

Team work: As an essential member of the staff, you will also need to communicate with doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals in your facility. You need to keep others updated about patients, order supplies and take instructions from others. You will need to be able to ask questions to ensure you understand processes and procedures. If you continue to grow in your role, you might take on leadership roles, which will involve training and supervising other employees.

Computer skills: Good typing skills and accuracy will be important as you learn new software, input data, do medical transcription and basic bookkeeping. If you have a knack for computers and learning software, it will help increase your efficiency on the job. You can learn the types of software used in medical offices from an accredited program such as the Medical Office Assistant program at Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) and on the job.

Medical skills: At Accelerated Career Institute, you will learn the clinical skills you need for the job. Although a medical office assistant does not diagnose patients, they may have to perform a few medical tasks such as measuring and recording vital signs. As well, part of your job may involve medical transcription. You will need to be familiar with terminology used by doctors. Typically these skills are learned through an accredited program, such as ACI.

Administrative skills: As a medical office assistant you will need to help with the general administration of the office. This will include data entry, bookkeeping, scheduling, billing and other basic office skills. You may learn these skills through courses, on the job or from other administrative positions you may have held in the past.

Organizational skills: Needless to say, managing an office while in a customer facing role requires excellent organizational skills. You will need to be able to take phone calls, greet patients, and perform the tasks assigned by the doctor or office manager. You may experience frequent interruptions. Your ability to multi-task will be essential in this role. Sometimes it will be impossible to do everything at once and you will need to prioritize your tasks.

If you enjoy working with people and are ready to take on new challenges in your career, find out if the medical office assistant program at ACI is right for you. Contact us today for more information.

Caribbean medical school: What are the benefits?

Street scene in ArubaFor many Canadian students a Caribbean medical school is a viable option for overcoming the difficulties of gaining acceptance into Canadian Medical Schools. However, there are other benefits of attending a Caribbean medical school.

Become a doctor sooner

In many cases, attending a Canadian medical school requires a four-year Bachelor degree. Working in partnership with Xavier University School of Medicine (XUSOM) in Aruba, Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) offers the pre-medicine training you need to enroll at this institution. The ACI program offered in Burnaby, BC, is 16 months and includes all the required prerequisites. Burnaby is within easy commuting distance of Vancouver and all Lower Mainland cities.

As well, many Canadians who plan to attend medical school apply two or three times at Canadian universities. This means that it might take them five or six years just to gain acceptance. With ACI, you can have your science curriculum completed and be on your way to clinical training by the time your peers are making their first applications to med school. Successful completion of the ACI Health Sciences program will guarantee your entrance to XUSOM with no MCAT required.

Caribbean medical school fees

In general, a Caribbean medical school is less expensive than studying in Australia or Ireland, two other popular destinations. The Canadian Resident Matching Service (CaRMS) conducted a survey and found that those studying in the Caribbean ended up with less bank and student loan debt. ACI and XUSOM students can qualify for Canadian and provincial student loans.

Clinical rotations in the United States

Students in Caribbean medical school programs don’t do their clinical rotations in the same country where they are studying. Clinical rotations take place in the United States. This is great for graduates as they are able to work in familiar environments, and can find work in Canada or the United States upon graduation. You can begin your training in places like California, New York and Washington.


According to the CaRMS survey, 94 per cent of students in the Caribbean rated their satisfaction with the education they were receiving as high. Caribbean schools base their curriculum on the North American standard, so you can be assured that your education will be compatible when you return to Canada.

While it is said that Canadians who study abroad have lower matching rates than those who study in Canada, there is still a great need for doctors, especially in northern and rural areas. Some provinces are actively trying to increase the number of foreign trained doctors to fill the gaps. Some foreign-trained Canadians choose to look for residencies in the United States. Keep an open mind and expect to be flexible in your career.

The Caribbean is the most popular choice for students interested in studying abroad. Start your training with Accelerated Career Institute’s Health Sciences program and then enter medical school in Aruba at XUSOM. Find out if this path is right for you by contacting us today.