Nurses´ Pathway to Work in Finland. Professional continuing education for nurses granted with a diploma in general nursing outside EU/EEA


In Finland we do not have enough professional nurses to work in social and health care. Immediately could be employed about 8000 nurses. It is estimated that almost half of currently working nurses will be retired by 2030.Despite of that annually graduates about 4500 professionals with competence of general nursing, this number will not meet the national requirements for nurses. It is a fact that Finland needs educated nurses from other countries, inside and outside the Europe.

The aim of this project “Nurses´ Pathway to Work in Finland” is to increase in Finland the number of actively working professional nurses, who have granted nurse diploma outside EU and EEA countries. Valvira is the national author that licenses these nurses to work as a professional nurse in Finland. The pre-requirement for license is a granted diploma for general nursing and recognized competences to work as a nurse in Finland to enhance the professional tasks of nurses and the patient´s safety. In addition is needed insufficient Finnish language skills to enable communication in work community. Finnish language is very important so that a nurse understands patients and relatives and can give appropriate supervision to help patients and relatives to manage self-care.

In this project competences of nurses granted with a nurse diploma outside EU /EEA is assess and compared to the Finnish nationally required nurse competences, which based on the European Union defined competences for general nurses (2005/36/EC, 2013/55/EU). The project organizes continuing education that includes the knowledge of Finnish social and health care system and legal guidance as well as patient´s safety, ethical codes and medication and pharmacological treatment. Based on the recognized missing competence a personal study plan is built for a nurse to enable apply license to work as a professional nurse in Finland. The education includes theoretical studies online, simulation, workshop and practical training.

The project is implemented in five universities of applied sciences (Laurea, OAMK, Savonia, TAMK, TurkuUAS), in which nurses can apply. The universities of applied sciences co-operate and share best practices to implement individually tailored continuing education for nurses granted with a diploma in general nursing outside EU/EEC as the aim to increase the amount of nurses in Finnish social and health care sector and help them to integrate in work communities. The project will develop in this web-side a model of Nurses´ Pathway to Work in Finland, which can be nationally utilized while internationally recruit nurses to work in Finnish Social and Health Care.


The project is funded by Finnish Ministry of Culture and Education /JOTPA.


Salla Seppänen, director, Laurea University of Applied Sciences


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