Unit of competency details

HLTAHW403B - Plan and implement health care in a primary health care context (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by HLTAHW018 - Plan, implement and monitor health care in a primary health care contextNew unit in HLT Health Training Package Release 1.0. Significant changes to elements and performance criteria. New evidence requirements for assessment, including volume and environment requirements 30/Jun/2013

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 25/Mar/2011

Qualifications that include this unit

CodeSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Title columnUsage RecommendationRelease
HLT44007 - Certificate IV in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Certificate IV in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Superseded1-2 
HLT61307 - Advanced Diploma of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Advanced Diploma of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Superseded1-2 
HLT43907 - Certificate IV in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care (Practice)Certificate IV in Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care (Practice)Superseded1-2 
HLT52207 - Diploma of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Diploma of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Primary Health (Community Care)Superseded1-2 
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SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 061305 Indigenous Health  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 061305 Indigenous Health  04/Nov/2011 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor

Unit Descriptor 

This unit deals with the skills and knowledge required to plan and implement a range of health care services as a member of a multi-disciplinary team working with Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander communities

Care plans are developed to address findings of clinical assessments, tests and procedures

Treatments include making referrals and development, implementation and evaluation of care plans in line with legislative requirements and organisation protocols

Application of the Unit


This unit may be applied by those working individually (eg. in isolated practice) or as part of a team (eg. associated with a clinic or hospital)

It is imperative that cultural issues, including gender and kinship issues, are respected in the delivery, assessment and application of this competency unit

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not Applicable


Not Applicable

Employability Skills Information

Employability Skills 

This unit contains Employability Skills

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements define the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

The Performance Criteria specify the level of performance required to demonstrate achievement of the Element. Terms in italics are elaborated in the Range Statement.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Develop care plan  for client

1.1 Use standing order /written care protocols  to underpin health care plans

1.2 Consult clients about proposed care plan and explain how it relates to their health assessment results

1.3 Develop the care plan with reference to relevant health care team and other health care providers

1.4 Propose treatment in accordance with organisation policies and procedures and as negotiated with the client, their family and/or the community

1.5 Include measures consistent with standing orders/ written protocols, based on health assessment findings

1.6 Refer clients as required to relevant health professionals in line with community, organisation and regulatory requirements

1.7 Clearly establish responsibilities for implementing the care plan and obtain client agreement to plan

1.8 Document health care plan in client's file in line with organisation policies and procedures

2. Implement care plan

2.1 Build and maintain a relationship of trust with each client, with active promotion of and strict adherence to confidentiality

2.2 Provide health information to client in appropriate language, supported by visual and other aids as required

2.3 Provide client with information about each aspect of the care plan and the rationale for its inclusion

2.4 Initiate action (including referral) as determined by effective decision-making in line with organisation policies based on results of clinical assessment and in accordance with accepted procedures and protocols

2.5 Conduct treatment in accordance with the care plan, organisation policies and procedures and occupational health and safety requirements

2.6 Use medical equipment correctly and maintain in accordance with manufacturer's specifications and organisation policies

2.7 Provide client with information about promoting and maintaining health in a way they understand

2.8 Maintain current, complete, accurate and relevant records for each client contact

2.9 Support client to take a self-care approach to implementing care plan in line with individual, organisation and community requirements

Required Skills and Knowledge


This describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit.

Essential knowledge :

The candidate must be able to demonstrate essential knowledge required to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

This includes knowledge of:

  • Organisation policies and procedures relating to client confidentiality
  • Underpinning knowledge of:
  • anatomy/physiology
  • pathophysiology
  • microbiology
  • pharmacology
  • relevant conditions
  • relevant treatments
  • care planning methods
  • associated care services available
  • Specific knowledge of pharmacology relevant to each treatment given
  • Current Medicare benefits applicable to clients
  • Potential impact of planned actions on client
  • Relevance of actions to client's state of social and emotional well-being
  • Potential risks associated with the condition being treated and treatment being proposed in relation to the holistic health of each client

Essential skills :

It is critical that the candidate demonstrate the ability to:

  • work independently and consistently in delivering primary health care services to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients, including:
  • Development and implementation of care plan for client
  • Working within an organisational framework, including working as part of a multi-disciplinary team
  • Maintenance of client records and upholding client confidentiality

In addition, the candidate must be able to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

This includes the ability to:

  • Collaborate with client and work with other members of multi-disciplinary team to formulate care plan
  • Work with other members of multi-disciplinary team to document care plan complying with organisational protocols
  • Communicate care plan to client and check their understanding
  • Use a motivational interviewing approach
  • Recognise situations requiring immediate or urgent action
  • Recognise and promote the need for continuous monitoring of chronic conditions
  • Implement care for defined range of conditions in line with protocols
  • Determine correctly the appropriate clinical procedure required in the specific circumstance
  • Carry out clinical procedures safely and effectively
  • Take action to appropriately respond to and manage signs/symptoms of uncontrolled pain
  • Use, clean and store clinical equipment safely and effectively
  • Manage treatments within context of individual care plan in consultation with multi-disciplinary team
  • Make timely and appropriate referrals within relevant guidelines, providing accurate and relevant details to clients and referral agencies

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the Performance Criteria, Required Skills and Knowledge, the Range Statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects of assessment :

  • The individual being assessed must provide evidence of specified essential knowledge as well as skills
  • Consistency of performance should be demonstrated over the required range of situations relevant to the workplace
  • Where, for reasons of safety, space, or access to equipment and resources, assessment takes place away from the workplace, the assessment environment should represent workplace conditions as closely as possible

Conditions of assessment :

This unit includes skills and knowledge specific to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander culture

Assessment must therefore be undertaken by a workplace assessor who has expertise in the unit of competency or who has the current qualification being assessed and who is:

  • Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander him/herself


  • accompanied and advised by an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person who is a recognised member of the community with experience in primary health care

Context of assessment :

Competence should be demonstrated working individually, under supervision or as part of a primary health care team working with Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients

Assessment should replicate workplace conditions as far as possible

Related units :

This unit may be assessed independently or in conjunction with other units with associated workplace application

Range Statement


The Range Statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Add any essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts.

Cultural respect 

This competency standard supports the recognition, protection and continued advancement of the inherent rights, cultures and traditions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

It recognises that the improvement of the health status of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people must include attention to physical, spiritual, cultural, emotional and social well-being, community capacity and governance

Its application must be culturally sensitive and supportive of traditional healing and health, knowledge and practices

Community control 

Community participation and control in decision-making is essential to all aspects of health work, and the role of the health worker is to support the community in this process


Supervision must be conducted in accordance with prevailing state/territory and organisation legislative and regulatory requirements

References to supervision may include either direct or indirect supervision of work by more experienced workers, supervisors, managers or other health professionals

A person at this level should only  be required to make decisions about clients within the organisation's standard treatment protocols and associated guidelines

Legislative requirements 

Federal, state or territory legislation may impact on workers' practices and responsibilities. Implementation of the competency standards should reflect the legislative framework in which a health worker operates. It is recognised that this may sometimes reduce the application of the Range of Variables in practice. However, assessment in the workplace or through simulation should address all essential skills and knowledge across the Range of Variables

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Health Workers may be required to operate in situations that do not constitute "usual practice" due to lack of resources, remote locations and community needs. As a result, they may need to possess more competencies than described by "usual practice circumstances"

Under all circumstances, the employer must enable the worker to function within the prevailing legislative framework

Developing a plan of action includes :

  • Negotiation/consultation with client, team and others.
  • Documentation of the care plan.
  • Client involvement and understanding.
  • Use of appropriate range of assessment tools and methods.

Care plan may include :

  • Clinical treatments (as listed separately)
  • Holistic lifestyle self-management actions
  • Chronic condition self-management actions
  • Referral for further assessment, counselling and/or treatment
  • Administration of medicines
  • Monitoring regime
  • Evaluation of care

Care plan may be :

  • Written
  • Computer generated

Situations requiring immediate action include :

  • Life-threatening conditions or injuries
  • Cardiovascular or cerebrovascular events.

Situations requiring systematic long -term management include :

  • A range of chronic conditions related to social and emotional wellbeing.

Standing orders /written care protocols include :

  • Written guidelines or orders that support the clinical assessment and management of presenting health problems (eg. CARPA)

Medical equipment used for treatments may include :

  • Centrifuge
  • Ear syringes
  • Suturing equipment
  • Resuscitation equipment
  • Nebuliser
  • Peak flow meter
  • Syringes
  • Needles
  • Vacutainers
  • Sphygmomanometer
  • Stethoscope
  • Oxygen equipment
  • Ophthalmoscope
  • Glucometer
  • Scales
  • Bandages
  • Dressings
  • Oral health care instruments, including dental mirror, blunt tweezers, light source

Treatments may include :

  • Splinting
  • Bandaging
  • Basic eye and ear health care, including:
  • ear toilets to clear pus and debris from outer ear
  • use of appropriate management protocols for ear health
  • Application of simple wound dressings, including:
  • cleaning and dressing of wounds using wound management protocols
  • arrangements for follow up care of wounds and skin infections
  • Treating head lice, scabies, common cold, diarrhoea.
  • Simple podiatry care and referral to specialised podiatry services as indicated.
  • Basic suturing and wound closure as per standard treatment protocols
  • Oxygen therapy
  • CPR
  • Nebuliser administration
  • Administration of medications
  • Immunisations

Conditions to be managed may include :

  • Lacerations
  • Burns
  • Choking
  • Asthma
  • Poisoning
  • Respiratory arrest
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Stings and bites
  • Hypothermia
  • Hypoglycaemia
  • Hyperglycaemia
  • Sprains and fractures
  • Scabies/lice
  • Confusion
  • Epilepsy or fits
  • Haemorrhage
  • Head injuries
  • Facial and oral trauma
  • Spinal injuries
  • Clients presenting with general emotional or mental distress, anxiety, anger, frustration, mourning or grief.

Unit Sector(s)

Not Applicable