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.

Organisations are composed of people, and people, I hope the reader will agree, are precious. The PathCare Academy maintains its aim to find and foster the right people for becoming a part of the PathCare family. The Academy aims to train, educate and carefully nurture those whom we invite to join us. But, growth and development come only with both effort and experience.

An elephant, I have been told, grows its tusks at a slow rate of only some seven inches a year. The tusks grow throughout digging for water and roots; debarking trees and moving branches; clearing pathways; and when fighting to defend. The ivory, while strong, is also soft as calcite, and because deemed precious, elephants need protection from poachers aiming to place their tusks into the hands of the carvers of trinkets.

People are precious; and growth and development comes through hard work, defence of the parade, an acceptance of responsibility, and a gratitude for opportunities and others. Through the interplay of these factors, gems as wondrous as phosphorescent opals can emerge. But, as we know well in South Africa, precious people also need to protect each other from those who would do harm. So, after fourteen years of efforts and experience, the Academy continues to grow its working tusks, and to astonish with the radiance of an opal; yet, it must ever work to protect what is precious within, and to adapt to an ever-shifting environment.

The Academy will continue to succeed as a result of the commitment, hard work, and kind collaboration of the Academy staff, dedicated colleagues in the broader PathCare organisation, and the students and programme participants themselves. As is now perhaps well known, our students on our flagship programmes have maintained an extraordinary 97% pass rate on Health Professions Council exams since opening our doors in 2006, and with over 93% of our students selected from historically disadvantaged communities across the country, we have contributed to developing a South Africa for all who live in it.

The Academy offers a variety of full-length programmes (varying in duration from three months to two years): Learnerships, certificate programmes, work/study programmes, workplace experience programmes, and internships 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 classroom situations and practical knowledge gained in real work stations. Qualified professional staff lecture, train and supervise the students. Students pay no tuition fees at the Academy, but are rather paid a monthly stipend to work for PathCare under supervision in their chosen field while they learn.

Each year the Academy also revisits and adjusts our programmes and offerings in response to an ever-changing environment with even entirely new programmes regularly introduced. 2019 saw the introduction of our new learnership for debtor’s clerks, as well as new management and leadership programmes detailed in the pages that follow.

Perhaps most importantly, the Academy supports and promotes the 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 / interacts with us; and to set an example for professional and ethical behaviour. I once again am delighted to commend and thank my colleagues and our students, all the gems who are making the efforts to grow stronger tusks to build a better future at PathCare and for South Africa.

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.

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.

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.
Contact Academy for further information: