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The HCEU competence matrix 'Professional Care'

(c) Sergey Nivens/

The HCEU matrix "Professional Care" describes the core set of competences required by professionals working within professional care. This includes different profiles related to nursing as well as elderly care.

The matrix has been developed out of two matrixes on "Nursing" developed in the HCEU project as well and on "Elderly Care" developed in the NoBoMa project but validated and further developed within HCEU.

The "Nursing" matrix has been developed according to the procedure developed by VQTS:

  • Comprehensive research and analysis of relevant publications on vocational training in nursing and review of relevant results of EU projects (e.g. "Tuning", "Proper Chance"),
  • Analysis of national professional profiles and job descriptions of nurses in the countries of the project partners (Germany, Greece, Austria, Poland, Hungary) as well as United Kingdom, United States, New Zealand and Canada,
  • Interviews with nurses, representatives of vocational education and training and with representatives of employers, workshops with representatives of vocational education and training as well as from the practice of health care, nursing and geriatric care,
  • Definition of core work tasks and processes in professional care,
  • Grouping of work processes into areas of competence and sub-areas of competence. Each competence area comprises those competences that enable the fulfilment of work tasks in the corresponding work area,
  • Validation of the matrix in focus groups by experts from Germany, Greece, Austria, Poland and Hungary.

The existing matrices "Elderly Care" and "Nursing" were brought together by experts to form the common matrix "Professional Care". This has been done in order to reflect praxis and developments in the EU member states to look at both areas of work together.

This new matrix has been further developed and validated to the current status through further expert workshops in the HCEU partner countries and through numerous expert discussions and working groups. The validation process comprises both the comparison of the matrix contents with existing curricula in the partner countries and the repeated checking of the contents for actual nursing work processes in partner country institutions. The HCEU matrix 'Professional Care' is accordingly a representation of the entire field of professional care, independent from the specific national context.

Ten competence areas (CA = competence area, TCA = transversal competence area) were identified and further elaborated for the occupational field 'Professional Care'.

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