Qualification and programme overview

This qualification is delivered as an apprenticeship that is well-supported and resourced with a team of Apprenticeship Advisors providing pastoral care and support.

The Apprenticeship in Primary Care Practice Assistance gives your staff the training they need to undertake clinical and administrative tasks in a primary care practice.

Employees will learn how to perform routine clinical tasks under direction and delegation of a health professional and contribute to the effective functioning of primary care practice
and quality systems.

The Primary Care Practice Assistance programme includes developing the following core competencies: 

  • Engaging and communicating with people, family and/or whānau who are accessing primary care  services, in a manner which respects their socio-cultural identity, experiences and self-knowledge.
  • Relating the unique place Māori have as tangata whenua and knowledge of person-whanau interconnectedness to their own role.
  • Actively contributing to a culture of professionalism, safety and quality within your primary care organisation.
  • Understanding New Zealand’s health and wellbeing challenges and the purpose and impact of their own role.
  • Applying knowledge of primary care to support people, family and/or whānau, and your healthcare team.
  • Gaining an in-depth knowledge of a condition, impairment, situation or issue and applying the new knowledge to support clients.
  • Performing routine clinical tasks in a primary care practice setting under direction and delegating, and contributing to the effective functioning of primary care practice administration and quality systems.


How is this programme delivered?

This Careerforce apprenticeship is a well supported, workplace training programme.  Whilst the learning at this level is self directed, a team of dedicated Apprenticeship Advisors provide pastoral care and support.


How long is the programme?

The programme should take between 18 and 24 months.


What does this programme cost?

Enrolment is this programme is FREE.
* This programme presently has free enrolment via the Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF)


Funding to support your business

Employers may also qualify for the Apprenticeship Boost which provides a wage subsidy for new and existing apprentices in their first two years of training, encouraging employers to retain their current apprentices, and to take on new apprentices. Find out more


Do you need more information?

Download qualification brochure

Visit our Apprenticeship pages to learn more about health and wellbeing apprenticeships.

Learn more about Apprenticeships


Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the questions below to reveal the answers.  Please contact us via if you have a question not covered below.

The Careerforce apprenticeship programme is for experienced staff. It builds on the technical skills and knowledge that staff already have, to develop their critical thinking, reflective practice and expand their ‘toolkit’. The programme is ideal for Primary Care Practice Assistants and Staff in clinical and administrative roles that support GPs and nurses. People wishing to complete this programme will need the support of their employer to be able to enrol.

Apprentices gain their skills and knowledge through on-job learning. The core value of industry-based training is that it sets people up with the right experiences, skills and knowledge. Apprentices can earn while they learn, gain nationally-recognised qualifications, support more complex health conditions and handle challenging social issues, resulting in better health outcomes for the New Zealand community.

The learning at this level is self-directed and the apprentice will be developing new ideas and new ways of approaching their work. They will be stretched and allowed to explore special interest areas in greater depth, becoming more proactive rather than reactive.

The on-job learning is supported by Careerforce’s Aka Toi online learning platform.

Careerforce Apprenticeships are well-supported and resourced. The Careerforce Apprenticeship Advisor acts as “coach” providing one-on-one support appropriate to the individual apprentice and their needs. The apprentice’s advisor will engage with the employer and others as needed to provide additional learning support and appropriate pastoral care based on the apprentice’s needs. The Advisor could also be the assessor.

The expected duration for a Primary Care Practice Assistance apprenticeship is from 18 to 24 months.

Currently there are no enrolment fees for the Primary Care Practice Assistance Apprenticeship (valued at $2,000 NZD).

The employer usually pays the fees for staff to enrol in these programmes. To enrol in a Careerforce programme, you must be currently employed, and have the support of your employer.

As part of Budget 2020, the New Zealand Government, announced its Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF). This fund is designed to encourage and support New Zealanders to undertake vocational education and training in targeted areas. The fund removes costs for a wide range of level 4 programmes including apprenticeships through to December 2022.


To enrol in the New Zealand Apprenticeship in Health and Wellbeing (Level 4) (Primary Care Practice Assistance), please call 0800 277 486, email: or speak to your local Careerforce Workplace Advisor

Contact Us Now

Level 4

Ideal for

  • Primary Care Practice Assistants
  • Staff in clinical and administrative roles that support GPs and nurses

Relevant for the following sectors

  • Healthcare Services
  • 120 Credits
  • 18 - 24 months
  • $2000 (inc GST) FREE ENROLMENT*

The apprenticeship opened my eyes. I tell you it just pushed me to another level. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done.

Moana Manu | National Hauora Coalition
Read more