Health care assistance class will now be available at Lakes District campus of the College of New Caledonia.

Health care assistance class will now be available at Lakes District campus of the College of New Caledonia.

Provincial funding creates 16 health care assistant spaces in Burns Lake

The B.C. government is providing $136,000 to the Lakes District campus of the College of New Caledonia.

The B.C. government is providing $136,000 to the Lakes District campus of the College of New Caledonia (CNC).

The funding will result in the creation of 16 health care assistant spaces at the Lakes District campus. Currently, there are zero health care assistant spaces in Burns Lake.

Matt Partyka, CNC’s Spokesperson, said receiving this funding was critical.

“There is no base funding for these types of health programs and there is a growing need for health care assistants in the north,” he said.

Partyka added that Northern Health is an important partner and is working closely with the College of New Caledonia to deliver the health care assistant program in Burns Lake.

The provincial government says one-time funding for short-duration health-education programs helps address the immediate needs of specific communities so that the supply of trained health-care professionals is aligned with demand. The funding, which is targeted at programs running for one year or less, was awarded after public post-secondary institutions answered a call for proposals.

The B.C. government has provided one-time funding for additional education spaces in health programs annually since 2008, and funding to date totals $14.8 million, which has created more than 1800 student spaces throughout the province.

“Our government is focused on finding the most effective way of funding health education to ensure that the supply of health-care workers is aligned with demand for health services in Burns Lake,” Nechako Lakes MLA John Rustad said.