7 months full time
Delivery mode:
Face to Face with eLearning
Study off-campus:
Available for Industry.
Contact VU Polytechnic for more information
Application due dates:
For information on the next course start date, request a call back.


Start your career in emergency health care – one of Australia’s largest and fastest growing industries – with a Diploma of Emergency Health Care HLT51020 from Victoria University.

During this healthcare course, you will gain the clinical skills and knowledge to assess patients in an emergency. You will learn how to provide life support, and master appropriate interventions for the crucial time before your patient gets to hospital.

Learning from our expert staff through our award-winning learning model, you will gain knowledge and skills in emergency reponses:

  • providing critical life support
  • infection prevention and control procedures
  • management of major incident scenes
  • delivering clinical care
  • health professional and health system engagement
  • safe work practices.

You also gain crucial patient communication skills, including:

  • analysing and responding to client health information
  • communicating complex situations to support health care
  • working with culturally diverse patients.

Once you have completed this course, you will have the confidence and skills to work in the healthcare and patient-transport industry, supporting ambulance drivers, paramedics, and hospital workers.

Everything you learn with Victoria University Polytechnic has direct links to the real world. We place a strong emphasis on clinical and practical learning.

Clinical placement is an important part of your training. You will be progressively introduced, under supervision, to the responsibilities and experiences of the ambulance transport attendant. Through 160 hours of placement, you will gain direct practical experience to improve your confidence.

We have a strong network of established industry contacts and provide a supportive learning environment in the workplace and community.

COVID-19 vaccine requirement

In response to Victoria's Roadmap announced in September 2021, all students must have any COVID-19 vaccine prior to the commencement of placement.

  • You must provide evidence of having the COVID-19 vaccine. If you are not compliant with this requirement you are not eligible to undertake a placement and progress within the course. 
  • Be willing to undergo any additional checks and immunisations as directed by the University.

You will practise your new skills in a safe environment in our state-of-the-art facilities. They include:

  • clinical practice rooms
  • self-directed learning laboratories (SDL)
  • life-like mannequin technology.

As a leading health and fitness university, VU’s St Albans and Werribee campuses also feature high-quality fitness centres.

This course is delivered through Victoria University Polytechnic’s award-winning interactive e-learning model that combines face-to-face workshops with flexible, user-friendly eLearning activities.

VU’s Learning Hubs are welcoming spaces where you can improve your study and employability skills.

Our students can attend Learning Hubs at one of five VU campuses.

We offer maths, writing, careers and English-language advice, and show you effective ways to study and manage your time.

Our programs include:

  • workshops
  • drop-in sessions
  • peer mentoring
  • maths and writing resources
  • resume and career guidance.

We also have accessibility support services and counselling services available for all students.

TAFE resources


In Victoria, you will be qualified to work in roles such as:

  • Ambulance Transport Attendant (ATA)
  • Patient Transport Officer (PTO)
  • Ambulance Community Officer (ACO) with Ambulance Victoria (in rural areas).

Further employment opportunities vary from state to state. You may find employment with:

  • private sector health care providers e.g. Royal Flying Doctor Service, St John Ambulance
  • state/territory ambulance authorities
  • Australia Defence Force
  • first aid providers.

Course structure

To be awarded the HLT51020 Diploma of Emergency Care, a total of Seventeen (17) units of competency must be achieved, comprising of:

* Nine (9) core units
* Eight (8) elective units, consisting of:

  • at least four (4) units from the electives listed below,
  • up to four (4) units from the electives listed below or from any other current endorsed Training Package or accredited course. The selection of electives must be relevant to the job outcome sought, local industry requirements and the complexity of skills appropriate to the AQF level of this qualification.

The course structure comprises the following core and elective units. These electives have been selected based on industry needs, graduate pathways and/or student and teacher feedback.

VU Polytechnic delivers the electives listed in the ‘course structure and units’ below. These electives have been selected based on industry needs, graduate pathways and/or student and teacher feedback. Alternative suitable electives are only available via Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer (CT).

Core units

Elective units


This qualification reflects pre-hospital and out-of-hospital workers employed to provide patient assessment, healthcare and transport services. These workers possess clinical skills and theoretical knowledge and provide clinical assessment and pre-hospital and out-of-hospital interventions to patients in an emergency, including providing advanced skills in life support.

Fees & scholarships

Fee type definitions

The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re offered a government subsidised place or a full fee-paying place.

Students who enrol in a:

  • government subsidised place pay subsidised tuition fees (the government contributes the rest), and may be required to pay a Student Services and Amenities Fee along with any material fees
  • full fee-paying place pay the full fee tuition rate (which includes Student Services and Amenities Fee and any material fees).

Calculate your VET course fees.

Find out more about:

Scholarships & assistance

Apply for a scholarship to help with your study costs.

We can help with fee assistance and advice.

Admission & pathways

Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course. Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.

If you do not meet the minimum requirements you may be eligible for one of our special admission programs.

Find out more about how to apply for our courses, and our commitment to admissions transparency.

Entry requirements

As part of the application process applicants must:
- be at least 18 years of age or over by the time of commencement date of the program
- complete a Pre-training Review (PTR)
- undertake a literacy and numeracy (LN) assessment. VU Polytechnic use the Basic Key Skills Builder (BKSB) tool for this assessment and applicants must achieve level four (4) in both literacy and numeracy. Applicants who complete the ACSF assessment tool the minimum exit level three (3) for both literacy and numeracy must be achieved.
- hold a driver's Licence (probationary licence accepted)
- undergo an interview, prior to admission into the course.
Pathway delivery model:
This delivery model requires students to have completed the following units before entry into the program, which normally in the course HLT31115 Certificate III in Non-Emergency Patient Transport and HLT31120 Certificate III in Non-Emergency Patient Transport:
CHCDIV001 Work with diverse people
- HLTWHS002 Follow safe work practices for direct client care
- HLTWHS006 Manage personal stressors in the work environment
- HLTOUT001 Implement safe access and egress
- HLTOUT010 Communicate in complex situations to support health care
HLTINF006 Apply basic principles and practices of infection prevention and control.Applicants are required to provide Academic transcript with a minimum of four (4) units. For students who do not hold the units HLTOUT001 and HLTOUT010, will be required to undertake these units as part of the program.
Practical Placement requirements:
For employment and practical placement purposes, this vocational sector typically requires:
- A current Working with Children Check (WWCC)
- Police check (valid 6 months of course commencement)
- Medical and physical testing (InjuryNet) as required for Ambulance Victoria related shifts
- Fit to work check
- Evidence of up to date Immunisations
- Any other regulatory requirements (e.g. PPE training)
- In response to Victoria's Roadmap announced in September 2021, all students must have any COVID-19 vaccine prior to the commencement of placement. Students will be required to provide evidence prior to commencement of placement. If students are not compliant with this requirement they are not eligible to undertake a placement and this will mean that they will not be able to progress within their course.
Failure to provide the required documents in the timeframe specified by the Course Coordinator, means you will be unable to undertake practical placement in a workplace and therefore not eligible to progress in this course.
The following are suggested sites you could visit to obtain these checks:
Police Record Check - http://www.police.vic.gov.au/content.asp?Document_ID=274
Working with Children Check - http://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/
- Information about the immunisations can be found online at https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/immunisation

There are many ways you can start your education journey at VU. Pathways offer an easy transition between courses at different levels, so that you can start with a certificate and progress right through to postgraduate study.

Find out more about pathways and credits.

Use our credit calculator to find out how much credit you could get towards your course, based on your previous study.

You may be able to complete your qualification sooner through formal recognition of your existing skills. This is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

To receive RPL, we assess your previous work, education and life experiences against recognised qualifications. Applications for RPL can be made prior to enrolling.

Call us on 1300 TAFE VP (1300 823 387) to discuss RPL options with the course manager.

On completion of this course you will be guaranteed entry into the following degree and in some cases receive credit for your study:

You will be credited for up to 96 credit points of study.

Find out more about our study pathways to VU

How to apply

Prior to enrolment, all applicants will be required to complete a literacy and numeracy assessment to assist with determining eligibility and to identify learning support needs.

Applications for this course are not being taken at this time.

Browse our other Paramedicine courses or send us an enquiry to be notified of updates relating to this course.

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Contact VU Polytechnic

Please note that if changes to this course occur, VU will notify students as soon as possible.

At Victoria University, we aim to display accurate and complete course information online. However, we are unable to guarantee that every course change is currently displayed. You may contact the University directly on +61 3 9919 6100 to confirm the most up-to-date course fees, pathways and credit transfer, recognition of prior learning, admission and enrolment procedures, examinations and services available to our students.