The Norwegian government will partner with the municipal sector organizations to get more municipalities to offer students of health and social studies internships.
Through a statement issued on September 9, the government emphasized that the lack of practices presents an obstacle to the training of more health personnel, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“The agreement means that the municipal sector’s organization KS, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health and Care Services will be driving forces to bring about more and better cooperation between universities and colleges and municipalities,” the statement reads.
As the government explains, such a move will benefit not only the students of health and social studies but also the citizens who use municipal health services.
“The lack of internships is a bottleneck, and we hope the agreement with the municipal sector organizations will mean that we get more in the municipalities,” Research and Higher Education Minister Ola Borten Moe pointed out in this regard.
Data show that about 20 per cent of all municipalities today do not have student interns from health and social studies programs.
According to Statistics Norway, in 2023, Norway may mark a deficit of 20,000 nurses.
As a result, to cope with this situation, this year, the government created 300 new study places for nursing courses and nursing specializations and simultaneously asked universities and colleges to train another 200 nursing students within their framework.
The 200 spots are distributed among institutions such as OsloMet and Høgskulen på Vestlandet, with 30 spots each; the University of Agder, University of Stavanger, and the University of Southeast Norway with 20 individual spots.
The government also added that in order to achieve increases in reception capacities, more practices are needed, especially in the municipalities.
According to the government, more and more health services are provided by the municipalities, and it is important that through education, students gain experience and competence to work there.
At the beginning of this year, the government allocated an additional NOK 50 million to state and private universities and colleges to contribute to more internships in the municipalities. In this way, the money will be used to cover travel and accommodation expenses and also for health and social studies students who complete an internship away from campus.
Commenting on this agreement, the Minister of Health and Care, Ingvild Kjerkol, said that many professionals with the right skills are needed in the common health service, and for this reason, it is essential to increase the quality and capacity of practices in the municipalities .
He also added that the agreement between this cooperation addresses the challenges and is an example of the effective measures that will be taken to face the challenges of the staff in the coming years.