Reidunn H. Korsnes, Senior Advisor, Ă…lesund, Norway

- VAR collaboration with students provides mutual benefits

Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: Thinkstock/Goodluz

- The collaboration project between the university college and the community health care became a win-win (...and win!)

- We got in touch with the nursing training programme at University College Ålesund and suggested a project involving students in the VAR training of the community health workers. The University College was keen on the idea: students would gain experience of teaching and would have the opportunity to use the VAR-procedures during their practice placements in the community health care.

Buy-in of senior management

Reidunn H. Korsnes explains. She is the Senior Advisor to the Chief Administrative Officer's staff, Team Health and Care in the municipality of Ålesund. VAR Healthcare was procured and made easily available via the local municipal authority's professional system; the time was ripe for using VAR in new ways. The local municipal authority's senior management bought into the collaboration project and a representative of the Chief Administrative Officer's Staff participated in the management group.

The summary of the project concluded as follows:

  • The students were trained in teaching and creating teaching programmes
  • Students had the opportunity to teach in practice and gained specific experiences
  • The community health workers received thorough and engaging VAR training
  • The project resulted in ideas for further collaboration in which students can bring new knowledge to the community health care and gain valuable experience and relevant skills in return

Extensive and active participation

- The Centre for Development of Institutional and Home Care Services in Møre og Romsdal UHT was actively involved in the planning and implementation of the project. Team leaders from the organisations participated in the project group to ensure focus on the use of the procedures and allocate time for personnel to ensure that they received the best training possible. Team leaders also provided constructive input for improvements to the employees’ learning situations. The community health care involved each district independently so as to ensure that the work was manageable.

The university college prepared the students and provided guidance for the duration of the project period, which concluded with a project evaluation. The project lasted for one year.

- This collaboration project between the university college and the community health care became a win-win (and win again): for the students/university college, for the employees/community health care and for the users/patients.