Training Academy

Addressing the skill shortage in the pathology sector

The PathCare Academy for Training and Development was established in Cape Town in February 2006 with the aim to help address the South African skills shortages in the pathology sector in particular.


The PathCare Academy was the first centre in South Africa where phlebotomists were trained. We also developed courses for laboratory technicians and laboratory assistants.

The Academy offers learnerships, certificate programmes, work/study programmes, and internships.  These full-length programmes (which vary in duration from three months to two years) provide individuals with opportunities to acquire knowledge and skills in professional, technical and support areas of health care.  The programmes provide students with a balance of theoretical knowledge gained in the classroom, and practical knowledge gained in real work stations.  Qualified professional staff lecture, train and supervise the students throughout the programmes.  Students pay no tuition fees at the Academy, instead they receive a monthly stipend to work for PathCare under supervision in their chosen field while they learn.  The locations from which our students are recruited continue to diversify, contributing to a broader footprint each year.  PathCare is proud that it has created opportunities for well over a thousand disadvantaged individuals, who otherwise may not have had such opportunities, to obtain qualifications and/or employment.

The Academy also continues to facilitate the skills development needs of PathCare by providing training for the more than 3 000 permanently employed PathCare staff members throughout South Africa.  Since opening the Academy in 2006, we have welcomed over 30 000 short course participants.

The Academy Phlebotomy Technician Learnership (which originated in South Africa at the initiative and drive of PathCare) has seen an overall qualifying pass rate of 96% over the twelve year period.  Furthermore, 37% of those who succeeded passed the HPCSA (Health Professions Council of South Africa) qualifying Board examinations with distinctions.  In 2018 a 100% pass rate was achieved by our Phlebotomy Learners for the eighth consecutive year!

Similarly, the Academy’s Medical Laboratory Technician Programme has seen an overall qualifying pass rate of 97% over the same twelve year period and 46% of these successful candidates achieved distinctions on their HPCSA qualifying Board examinations.  The overall combined pass rate for our two “flagships” over the ten year period stands at 97% (with a 41% distinction rate).  Over 500 individuals has qualified in this manner over the years.

The Academy however is not only about HPCSA examination results and the delivery of knowledge and skills-based programmes, but takes its satisfaction and pride in that we aim, through our activities, to support and promote the espoused PathCare value system.  We aim to improve customer service and experience through training; to develop and engender a culture of accountability and responsibility; to value and respect every person who comes to / interact with us; and we endeavour to set an example for professional and ethical behaviour in all our undertakings.

We believe that we can contribute further to a better future at PathCare and for South Africa.

Please find further information on Academy programmes, short courses, and students in the following pages.

Academy Programmes


In addition to the BHSC degree students at the Academy in Cape Town, the Academy also supports a number of Intern Medical Technologists through distance programmes.

Phlebotomy Technician Learnership

The PathCare Academy offers this programme for the training of Phlebotomy Technicians (Further Education and Training Certificate: Phlebotomy Techniques, NQF level 4).

Programmes for existing Pathcare employees

In addition to our full-length programmes, various short courses in the Academy’s technical expertise, service quality, and business capacity pillars are continuously on offer for existing PathCare staff nationally, in classroom and e-learning formats.

Student Laboratory Assistant Programme

The Academy’s Laboratory Assistant Programme provides for training towards a nationally recognised qualification and career path at PathCare.

Contact Academy for further information:

Student Medical Laboratory Technician Programme

The Student Medical Laboratory Technician (SMLT) programme is a two-year programme in which suitable candidates from within and outside of PathCare are recruited to undergo training to become Qualified Medical Laboratory Technicians in Clinical Pathology or Histology.

Supervisory Skills and Management Development

In addition to the short courses, PathCare also provides a number of programmes for the development of its supervisors and managers, and management workshops in a variety of topic areas.

Trainee Data Capturer Programme

The accurate and rapid entering of patient demographics and tests requested by referring doctors is critical to the quality and success of diagnostic pathology.

Trainee Depot Administrator Programme

The Academy first and foremost aims to develop training programmes in support of PathCare’s business objectives and operations.

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