Oulun ammattikorkeakoulu

Interprofessional education as a means of improving the quality of care in Germany  – Learning from Finland

Tervaskanto-Mäentausta Tiina, Senior Lecturer, MNSc, Med, PHN, Oulu University of Applied Sciences

Vanhanen Minna, Lecturer, MHSc, RN, Oulu University of Applied Sciences

Hyvämäki Piia, Lecturer, MHSc, RN, Oulu University of Applied Sciences

Cassier-Woidasky Anne-Kathrin, PhD, RN, Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University DHBW, Germany

A common interest in closer collaboration in the field of nursing education arose three years ago between Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University (DHBW) and Oulu University of Applied Sciences (OUAS). Interprofessional Education (IPE) and modern learning and training facilities were elements that motivated the creation of a joint educational network. The German side is interested in developing nursing education to the same academic level as in other European countries. OUAS is interested in sharing experi-ence and in cooperation towards the goals of competence-based IPE, high levels of nursing education and meeting future healthcare challenges. Since Baden-Wuerttemberg and Oulu are friendship regions, it was only natural for DHBW and OUAS to come together in such a partnership. 

The next step was to arrange an IPE workshop for educators and healthcare professionals in Baden-Wuerttemberg. The facilitators were lecturers from OUAS. The aim of the workshop was to train in inter-professional teamwork and to initiate further innovation in nursing education. Contents of the workshop were: IPE in medical and nursing education, the use of participative methods, and the improvement of pa-tient safety. Overall goals were to break down barriers between healthcare professionals and to enhance positive attitudes towards and readiness for interprofessional learning and 

IPLearning occurs when members of two or more professions learn with, from and about each other. Net-working, exchange programmes and the sharing of good practices will enhance the education of healthcare professionals and curriculum development in European countries. German nursing education needs to be brought up to the same level. The German Council of Science and Humanities requires that 20% of nurses receive an academic education to face the challenges of patient-centered care. Competence-based IPE, team-based development of professional identity, the use of modern didactic methods, and networks are key concepts in preparing nurses and physicians, the main healthcare professionals.