Connect with Us

Palliative Care (Certificate)

A caregiver holding the hand of a senior
Durham College Certificate

Durham College Certificate

Program Description

Through this program, you will build the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to serve in a helping capacity (i.e. RPNs, orderlies, PSWs, volunteers, support workers and clergy), for those with advanced or terminal illness and their families. You will learn to provide compassionate care in which the quality of remaining life is the objective. As well, you will explore symptom control as the basis to develop a team approach, which includes clients and those who are close to them. This program will also address bereavement care for families.

Certificate Requirements

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)
    Grade 12 equivalency certificate achieved through College academic upgrading
    Mature Student Status (19 years of age or older)

  • Clear Criminal Reference Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening is required for Field Placement. Without this, you may not be accepted for placement by a field placement agency and may be unable to complete the requirements of the program.
  • You must maintain an overall average of 60% or a GPA of 2.0 in order to graduate
  • A minimum of 25% of courses must be completed through Durham College.

Program Of Study

Students are required to print or save a copy of the Program of Study when beginning the program. This document contains critical details about program progression and graduation requirements specific to the academic year in which your program was started.

Click to access the Program of Study for the current academic year.

Students who began this program prior to the current academic year may contact the Professional and Part-Time Learning office at or 905-721-3052 to obtain your Program of Study and graduation requirements.

Field Placement

This program contains a field placement requirement.

For details, including paperwork submission deadlines, please visit the Field Placement Page, and for specific program-related field placement questions, please review the Healthcare Field Placement FAQs.

Program Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, students will be equipped to:

  • Practice in a professional manner in accordance with all relevant legal, legislative, ethical, and professional standards of practice
  • Utilize appropriate measures to provide comfort and pain management to the terminally ill and their families within both institutional and community settings
  • Practice in a context of respect for individual and multicultural approaches to death, dying, and grieving
  • Communicate effectively and compassionately with the terminally ill and their families

Career Options

Potential career and industry options may include:

  • Hospices
  • Long-term care homes
  • Hospitals
  • Home care

Related Credentials and Courses

Graduates interested in further professional development may be interested in the following courses/programs:

To learn more visit Credit Transfer.

Program Related Questions? Call 905.721.3052

If you are interested in applying for financial aid, please visit the Professional and Part-Time Learning OSAP Eligibility webpage.

Currently offered

Course Title Location/
Delivery Method
CARE 1587Comfort MeasuresOnline
CARE 1582Ethical, Legal & Spiritual ConcernsOnline
CARE 1580Orientation to Palliative CareOnline
CARE 1581Palliative Care Communications (12 weeks)Online
CARE 2591Palliative Care Field PlacementOffsite
CARE 1585Psychological & Social ImplicationsOnline