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Nordic collaboration to promote medication safety


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Henna Hannila, Arttu Kinnunen and Heath Nhandara are Bachelor students in Nursing Program and RN, MSc (Health Care) Anja Mikkola is their Senior lecturer.

Intensive week in Lappeenranta 27. - 31.4.2017

The authors participated in the Nurses' confidence in medication safety-intensive course, organized by Medico group and Saimia University of Applied Sciences.

Medico, funded by Nordplus is a collaboration consisting of professionals in the nursing education. The participants of this week came from Finland, Åland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland.

The aims of the week were to support students' confidence in medication safety, promote exchange of experience, bring up the differences in the cultures in medication safety, and promote exchange of best practices between Nordic countries.

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Photo 1. The participants.

Students´ confidence

During the week, the students were encouraged to engage into inter professional and inter nordic collaboration. The emphasis was on promoting safety culture and importance of holistic view to medication care.

Through lectures and group works, the students got tools to administer medication safely e.g. “9-rights” and how to manage an error situation. The importance of reporting errors and near-miss situations was also an integral part. During the lectures, it was highlighted how important communication is to prevent errors, and when errors have already occurred.

By having participants from different countries and experience-levels, it was possible to widen the participants´ perspectives and knowledge base.

The intensive week was a combination of group works and lectures held by the experts from the medication safety field. During the group works the master students lead the work and gave their views to the topics from the experiences in the practical field. By including a pharmacist in the panel discussion that was held during the week, the interprofessional collaboration in the medication safety was pointed out in a practical way.


Cultural differences

During the week, it was encouraged that the students share information about their health care environments, systems, and safety strategies in different Nordic countries. Based on the discussion and group works, the students made a conclusion that the systems used in the Nordic countries are similar, but some differences still exist. The students were really intrested in these questions and the discussion continued even after the lectures.

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Photo 2.

The lectures were build up on evidence based knowledge, and international sources were used to widen the views of the field of medication safety. The photo beside shows something that was new to the students. Professionals’ experience from different countries was used to show the students how the things are done in practice.

Activities outside the classroom

There was also different activities during the week. The students were connected together with sports like wall climbing (Photo 3) and all the participants were ice-floating in the lake Saimaa (Photo 4).

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Photo 3.

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Photo 4. This photo tells about the beautiful scenery, fine weather and wonderful feelings in ice floating.

This week was an important experience and gave tools to improve the working methods in medication safety and enjoying memories of working, learning, and imagining. Feedback from the course was good. Thank you.


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