Unit of competency details

HLTHIR301C - Communicate and work effectively in health (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by CHCCOM005 - Communicate and work in health or community servicesThis version was released in CHC Community Services Training Package release 2.0 and meets the requirements of the 2012 Standards for Training Packages. Merged CHCCS411C and HLTHIR301C. Significant changes to performance criteria. New evidence requirements for assessment, including volume and frequency requirements. Significant changes to knowledge evidence. 05/Aug/2015
Supersedes and is equivalent to HLTHIR301B - Communicate and work effectively in healthISC upgrade changes to remove references to old OHS legislation and replace with references to new WHS legislation. No change to competency outcome. 06/May/2012

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 07/May/2012

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
HLT41412 - Certificate IV in Cast TechnologyCertificate IV in Cast TechnologyDeleted
HLT41112 - Certificate IV in Ambulance CommunicationsCertificate IV in Ambulance CommunicationsSuperseded
HLT41512 - Certificate IV in Hyperbaric TechnologyCertificate IV in Hyperbaric TechnologyDeleted
HLT32512 - Certificate III in Health Services AssistanceCertificate III in Health Services AssistanceSuperseded
HLT41012 - Certificate IV in Health Care (Ambulance)Certificate IV in Health Care (Ambulance)Superseded
HLT43112 - Certificate IV in Defence Health CareCertificate IV in Defence Health CareDeleted
HLT42812 - Certificate IV in KinesiologyCertificate IV in KinesiologyDeleted
HLT31412 - Certificate III in Hospital-Health Services Pharmacy SupportCertificate III in Hospital-Health Services Pharmacy SupportSuperseded
HLT32112 - Certificate III in Prosthetic-Orthotic TechnologyCertificate III in Prosthetic-Orthotic TechnologyDeleted
HLT42612 - Certificate IV in Anaesthetic TechnologyCertificate IV in Anaesthetic TechnologyDeleted
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Displaying items 1 - 10 of 38

Accredited courses that have this unit in the completion mapping

CodeSort Table listing Accredited courses that have this unit in the completion mapping by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Accredited courses that have this unit in the completion mapping by the Title columnStatus
10091NAT - Certificate III in Employment and TrainingCertificate III in Employment and Training Non-Current
10304NAT - Certificate IV in Rebirthing/Breathwork TherapyCertificate IV in Rebirthing/Breathwork Therapy Non-Current
10454NAT - Diploma of Nutrition and Dietetics for Personal TrainersDiploma of Nutrition and Dietetics for Personal Trainers Non-Current
10461NAT - Diploma of Community HealthDiploma of Community Health Cancelled
10520NAT - Certificate IV in Polestar Pilates Matwork Instruction MethodCertificate IV in Polestar Pilates Matwork Instruction Method Non-Current
10519NAT - Certificate IV in Mind Body MedicineCertificate IV in Mind Body Medicine Cancelled
10410NAT - Certificate IV in Energy Healing (Reiki Treatment) (Therapeutic Touch)Certificate IV in Energy Healing (Reiki Treatment) (Therapeutic Touch) Cancelled
10537NAT - Diploma of Professional Pilates InstructionDiploma of Professional Pilates Instruction Non-Current
10339NAT - Certificate IV in Kahuna Bodywork (Relaxation)Certificate IV in Kahuna Bodywork (Relaxation) Non-Current
10564NAT - Certificate IV in Doula Support ServicesCertificate IV in Doula Support Services Non-Current
10376NAT - Certificate IV in PilatesCertificate IV in Pilates Non-Current
52739WA - Diploma of Paramedical Science (Procedural Department Practice)Diploma of Paramedical Science (Procedural Department Practice) Non-Current
10533NAT - Certificate IV in Bowen TherapyCertificate IV in Bowen Therapy Non-Current


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 120505 Work Practices Programmes 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 120505 Work Practices Programmes 02/Oct/2012 
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Modification History

HLT07 Version 4

HLT07 Version 5


HLTHIR301B Communicate and work effectively in health

HLTHIR301C Communicate and work effectively in health

ISC upgrade changes to remove references to old OHS legislation and replace with references to new WHS legislation. No change to competency outcome.

Unit Descriptor


This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge required to work effectively in a health setting with clients, staff, visitors, suppliers and others to meet established work requirements

Application of the Unit


This unit applies to work in a range of health settings such as:

  • specific community
  • community, regional or remote service provider
  • department of a large institution or organisation
  • specialised service or organisation
  • private provider

Application of this unit should be contextualised to reflect specific workplace requirements and practices

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. Work ethically

1.1 Follow ethical guidelines in decision-making in all work undertaken in the health setting with awareness of potential ethical complexity in own work role

1.2 Reflect understanding and compliance with the principles of duty of care and legal responsibilities in all work undertaken

1.3 Refer any breach or non adherence to standard procedures or adverse event to appropriate personnel

1.4 Maintain confidentiality of any client matter in line with organisation policy and procedure

1.5 Show respect for rights and responsibilities of others through considered application of work practices

1.6 Reflect current working knowledge and understanding of employee and employer rights and responsibilities in all work undertaken

1.7 Recognise, avoid and/or address any conflict of interest

2. Communicate effectively in a health setting

2.1 Develop, review and revise personal skills in communication as an ongoing priority to address organisation standards

2.2 Exercise caution in communicating personal information by oral and written means to ensure confidentiality of client and staff matters

2.3 Routinely apply workplace protocols and procedures in all workplace communication to support accuracy and understanding of information provided and received

2.4 Recognise individual and cultural differences and make any adjustments needed to facilitate the achievement of identified outcomes

2.5 Conduct interpersonal communication with clients and colleagues in a manner that enhances a client-centred approach to health care consistent with organisation standards

2.6 Take appropriate measures to resolve conflict and interpersonal differences in the workplace

3. Practise high standards of personal hygiene

3.1 Maintain personal hygiene with an understanding of risks associated with contamination and infection in a health setting

3.2 Wear personal protective equipment correctly according to organisation requirements

3.3 Safely dispose of infectious and/or hazardous waste material according to waste management policy and procedures

3.4 Report or initiate action within own area of responsibility to redress any potential workplace hazards

4. Promote a positive approach to health

4.1 Clarify components of own role that contribute to maintaining an effective and client-centred approach to health

4.2 Promote an approach in which clients are included in shared decision-making as partners in health care where appropriate

4.3 Contribute to a workplace culture of promoting good health by sharing health information in line with organisation policy

4.4 Focus on preventing ill health and minimising risk in the workplace

5. Maintain professional work standards

5.1 Identify relevant organisation policies and procedures relating to awards, standards and legislative requirements of own work role and clarify any uncertainties with appropriate personnel

5.2 Contribute to identifying and implementing improved work practices

5.3 Comply with relevant accreditation standards applying to work undertaken

5.4 Reflect understanding and focus on achieving organisation goals and objectives in all work undertaken

5.5 Respond positively to changes to improve work practices and procedures in accordance with organisation requirements

5.6 Identify and report issues requiring mandatory notification to supervisor and/or appropriate authority

6. Work effectively within the health care system

6.1 Demonstrate respect for workers from different sectors and levels of the industry

6.2 Work with awareness of the roles of various organisations in the health care system in Australia

6.3 Maintain awareness of current issues influencing health care, including health issues for Indigenous Australians

7. Take responsibility for personal skill development

7.1 Seek advice from appropriate persons on areas for skills/knowledge development

7.2 Identify options for accessing relevant skill development opportunities and initiate action in consultation with manager

7.3 Undertake designated skill/knowledge development and maintenance activities of the organisation including induction training

7.4 Identify and prioritise personal work goals in accordance with organisation 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:

  • Basic knowledge of employment terms and conditions in the workplace
  • Broad understanding of relevant organisation procedures, policies, awards, standards and legislation and how to access them
  • Broad implications of relevant legislation, including:
  • access and equity
  • anti-discrimination
  • child protection
  • infection control
  • work health and safety (WHS)
  • privacy
  • Meaning of Duty of Care, confidentiality of information and ethical decision-making in relation to specific work role duties and responsibilities; what constitutes a breach of these and potential ramifications of such a breach
  • Organisation procedures relating to:
  • emergency response
  • fire safety
  • security
  • Purpose of accreditation process and quality improvement practice
  • Principles underpinning client-centred health care
  • Principles of client safety
  • Relevance of the work role and functions to maintaining sustainability of the workplace, including environmental, economic, workforce and social sustainability
  • Role, function and objectives of the organisation, and relevance to specific work role

Essential skills:

It is critical that the candidate demonstrate the ability to

  • Apply knowledge of the ramifications of breaches of duty of care, confidentiality, ethical guidelines and other relevant policies and legislation
  • Apply understanding of good personal hygiene and risk associated with poor hygiene
  • Identify own responsibilities within the workplace

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:

  • Accurately follow procedures relating to:
  • personal hygiene
  • using personal protective equipment
  • Apply decision-making and problem solving skills as required to constructively achieve identified outcomes in line with work role
  • Demonstrate functional literacy skills needed for written and oral information about workplace requirements
  • Demonstrate communication skills as required by specific work role, including:
  • effectively communicate the importance of issues such as those relating to environmental responsibility and sustainable practice
  • interpreting and following verbal and/or written instructions
  • providing information
  • reporting incidents in line with organisation requirements
  • seeking clarification of tasks
  • Take a responsible approach to professional development, including:
  • being open to learning new ideas and techniques in a range of settings
  • maintaining own skills and knowledge and ongoing development
  • sharing workplace information with others
  • Recognise and act upon opportunities to enhance sustainability in the workplace
  • Use initiative in responding to challenging situations and individuals

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 for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate this competency unit:

  • The individual being assessed must provide evidence of specified essential knowledge as well as skills
  • Consistency of performance should be demonstrated over a range of workplace situations

Context of and specific resources for assessment:

  • Assessment should relate to an identified work role and associated workplace conditions
  • Resources essential for assessment include any documents specific to the work context such as:
  • instructions for the use of equipment
  • specific instructions for staff
  • emergency response procedures
  • fire safety policies and procedures
  • security procedures
  • relevant accreditation standards
  • waste management policies and procedures

Access and equity considerations:

  • All workers in the health industry should be aware of access and equity issues in relation to their own area of work
  • All workers should develop their ability to work in a culturally diverse environment
  • In recognition of particular health issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, workers should be aware of cultural, historical and current issues impacting on health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Assessors and trainers must take into account relevant access and equity issues, in particular relating to factors impacting on health of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and communities

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.

Requirements of own work role may include:

  • Level of responsibility
  • Organisation guidelines
  • Individual awards and benchmarks
  • Legislation relevant to work area
  • Accreditation standards

Organisation policy on confidentiality may relate to:

  • Storage of records
  • Destruction of records
  • Access to records
  • Release of information
  • Verbal and written communication

Organisation procedures, policies, awards, standards and legislation may include:

  • Australian Council on Healthcare Standards
  • Home and Community Care standards
  • NATA accreditation
  • National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) guidelines for infection control in health care settings
  • Federal and state legislation
  • Quality management policy and practice
  • Current Australian standards
  • Aged care accreditation standards
  • Accreditation and service provision standards of other relevant industry organisations
  • Relevant health regulations and guidelines, policies and procedures, including child protection

A client-centred approach to health includes:

  • Putting clients and carers at the centre of service delivery
  • When the client is a child or young person, service delivery strategies may need to be modified to ensure child safety and provide a child friendly, supportive environment
  • Including clients in decision-making relating to their health care
  • Involving clients in discussions about service delivery options and issues
  • Obtaining client consent to examine, treat or work with them
  • Effective customer service
  • Listening to and addressing client complaints within scope of own work role

Improved work practices may relate, for example to:

  • Enhancing outcomes for clients
  • Enhancing sustainability of work, such as efficient and effective work practices in relation to:
  • use of power
  • use of resources, including for administration purposes
  • waste management and recycling practices
  • Enhancing safety of staff and clients

Employee rights and responsibilities may relate to:

  • Duty of care responsibilities
  • Leave entitlements
  • Attendance requirements
  • Obeying lawful orders
  • Confidentiality and privacy of organisation, client and colleague information
  • Adherence to WHS
  • Protection from discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace
  • The right to union representation

Personal hygiene may include:

  • Washing hands according to specified standards
  • Maintaining personal cleanliness in the workplace
  • Refraining from eating, smoking and other designated activities in specific work areas
  • Taking standard and additional precautions against risk of infection and contamination
  • Wearing clean clothes and uniforms where specified

Personal protective equipment (PPE) may include:

  • Gowns
  • Sterile and non sterile gloves including heavy duty
  • Eyewear
  • Plastic aprons
  • Overalls
  • Enclosed footwear
  • Masks

Issues requiring mandatory notification may include:

  • Protection of children and others identified to be at risk
  • Issues defined by jurisdictional legislation and/or regulatory requirements
  • Issues specifically identified under organisation policies

Identifying and implementing improved work practices may include:

  • Reporting and implementing suggested improvements
  • Seeking and addressing customer feedback
  • Monitoring tasks
  • Responding to surveys and questionnaires
  • Assessing/observing/measuring environmental factors
  • Checking equipment
  • Developing and implementing child safe, child friendly resources, environment and work tools to support staff and volunteers working with people under 18 years of age

Employer rights and responsibilities may relate to:

  • Legislative requirements for employee dismissal i.e. Workplace Relations Act
  • Legislative requirements to provide a safe work environment free from discrimination and sexual harassment (see State and Commonwealth anti-discrimination legislation)
  • Enterprise workplace agreements
  • Relevant State and Territory employment legislation i.e. wage rates, employment conditions

Designated knowledge/skill development may relate to:

  • Hazard control
  • WHS
  • Manual handling
  • First Aid
  • Cultural awareness
  • Child Protection
  • Infection control
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation emergency response and notification protocols
  • Fire emergency response procedures for notification and containment of fire, use of fire fighting equipment and fire safety procedures
  • Security procedures
  • Quality improvement policy and practice
  • Discrimination, harassment and bullying in the workplace
  • Formal and informal resolution of grievances
  • Waste management
  • Customer service, including the provision of a child friendly environment that values, respects and welcomes children and young people
  • Communication, conflict resolution

Unit Sector(s)

Not Applicable