In 2019 Arcada launched two new healthcare programmes designed to answer to the needs of today’s society. Both programmes – the master’s programme Leadership for Nordic Healthcare and the bilingual two-year nursing programme organized in cooperation with Diak (Finnish-language Diacona UAS) – will start in the autumn of 2020.
Maria Forss, Head of the Department for Healthcare, and Jonas Tana, Senior Lecturer, are in charge of the new programmes.
– Leadership for Nordic Healthcare is the result of student activity – a response to a demand the students themselves have expressed. The healthcare sector needs foremen at different levels, and healthcare specialists need further education in leadership, says Forss.
Leadership is the common thread running through the whole programme, even if it’s made up of five different modules: leadership, the Nordic welfare model, digitalisation and ethics, service design and methodology.
– The big changes we can see in the social and healthcare sectors are to a large part due to increasing privatisation. The fact that we have a growing number of enterprises within the private sector producing health care services affects both clients and employees. These changes make new demands on tomorrow’s leaders – the challenges are more complex and the leaders must work well under pressure and be able to adapt easily, Forss continues.
Maria Forss, Head of the Department for Healthcare.
The leaders of the future have to be at the forefront of digital transformation and possess digital competence, but at the same time be aware of the ethical dilemmas that might arise, explains Jonas Tana.
– Collecting data is a huge issue from an ethical perspective. What kind of data do we collect concerning our clients and patients? What do we do with this data? Who owns it? How can it be used to best serve our clients? Yet another issue concerns demography and the digital gap between generations. We have to consider the groups of people that may remain outside the digitalisation process and how this impacts national health.
Jonas Tana, Senior Lecturer.
Today just about anything can be digitalised, but it doesn’t mean that total digitalisation is best for society as a whole.
– Leaders must be able to apply digitalisation where it’s actually useful – and refrain from digitalising where a human being is irreplaceable. We mustn’t digitalise just for the sake of digitalising, Tana says.
Today flexible studies are much in demand. The new master’s programme in healthcare is one hundred percent online, which is unique.
– Providing on-line programmes is one of Arcada’s main strengths, one where we already have several years of experience. There’s a great demand for such healthcare programmes. This is partially due to some of our students not living in Finland, and partially because others may be fully occupied with family and work. Not being able to be physically present shouldn’t be an obstacle to studying, Forss adds.
Flexibility and bilingualism
The new bilingual (Finnish and Swedish) nursing programme, organized together with Diak (UAS) focuses on flexibility Jonas Tana explains.
– The programme is made up of multiple or so-called flex studies; this involves distance studies as well as being physically present. The idea is to make it possible to combine studies with work. Here we differ from other schools – flex studies in nursing aren’t that common.
In this new bilingual programme students take half of the course in Finnish at Diak and the remaining half in Swedish at Arcada.
– This suits most students, but we are especially keen to accept students who already have an exam and want to change direction, or students with a career as practical nurse. We are strengthening cooperation between our two national languages and at the same time answering to a real demand today, the one for more nurses and especially bilingual nurses, Tana says.
Both new healthcare programmes meet a real demand in society today. The programmes also consolidate Arcada’s central role both in promoting multilingualism and as a bridge to the other Nordic countries.
– We would really like to see this new master’s programme evolve into a Nordic cooperation where individual universities take responsibility for their separate modules in a common programme, Forss concludes.