LAB University of Applied Sciences has been an active developer in healthcare logistics education, HLE. Development of HLE started 2012 in national project that defined totally new profession, job description, new service concept and set competence requirements for it as well as developed the first study modules for healthcare logisticians. Between 2018‒2020, HELP project ‒ Healthcare Logistics Education and Learning Pathway ‒ was the next step continuing the development in international context. The aim was to create a learning pathway for all educational levels. (HELP 2022.)
Healthcare logistics system includes material, information and people flows. The system supports service quality and patient safety, at the same time increasing cost and capacity efficiency as well as sustainability.
Healthcare logisticians are working in different kind of healthcare environments like hospitals, healthcare centers, home care etc. dealing with inhouse logistics operations. Healthcare logistician releases the healthcare professionals from logistics tasks and enables them to fully concentrate on the actual nursing or caring.
Development of HLE continues in a new collaboration between Rhine-Waal UAS (DE), HAN (NL), Yasar University (TUR) and LAB (FIN). The first workshop was held in May 2022 in Kamp-Lintfort and the objective was to start innovating pilot education. In the beginning of the workshop, we created the agenda for two days, bringing in the key topics from each participant. This ensured that all important issues were covered. The workshop concentrated on throwing ideas about learning methods, learning environments, learning platforms and timetables.
The foundation of educational collaboration is to implement micro-degree modules from each participating university. Each module consists of 5 acts and every partner university provides at least 3 modules on a yearly basis. Students will be able to take modules from partner universities either online, hybrid or on intensive week.
This new collaboration of universities will benefit participating universities in multiple ways. It enables the academic staff to exchange knowledge as well as pedagogical approaches via network meetings, staff and student exchange programs and joint-course developments. The international collaboration will also enable us to seek opportunities for follow-up project of HELP project to increase the competences and awareness of the healthcare logistics education across Europe (EFLE 2022).
Training module development will increase the amount of choice and specialization opportunities for the students. Students will have the possibility to take courses either online or spend a semester in a student exchange program. As a concrete next step, the four university partners agreed to organize an intensive program in August 2023, where selected students from partner universities will discover together different aspects of healthcare logistics.
In the future, we seek to increase the amount universities involved to broaden the possibilities for students, staff as well as surrounding healthcare organizations.
Kati Jaakkola works as a Senior Lecturer at LAB University of Applied Sciences at the Faculty of Business and Hospitality Management.
Miika Kuusisto works as a Degree Manager at LAB University of Applied Sciences at the Faculty of Business and Hospitality Management.
Ullamari Tuominen works as a Senior Lecturer at LAB University of Applied Sciences at the Faculty of Business and Hospitality Management.
HELP. 2022. Healthcare Logistics Education and Learning Pathway. Cited 3.6.2022. Available at https://help-project.eu/
EFLE. 2022. Healthcare Logistics ‒ an international University collaboration. Cited 3.6.2022. Available at https://www.efle.eu/education/