Nurses walking on the hallway of Jorvi hospital in Espoo. LEHTIKUVA


Diakonia University of Applied Sciences (Diak) is launching a new training program in Oulu designed for certified nursing assistants to become registered nurses more quickly, responding to the shortage of healthcare professionals in Northern Ostrobothnia.

The new nursing program for certified nursing assistants (CNA) will begin in the fall of 2023 at Diak's Oulu campus.

Applications for the program can be submitted during the joint application process from March 15 to March 30, 2023. The training is specifically intended for individuals who have completed a CNA program.

Thanks to the training background, students can complete the degree through part-time studies in about half the usual time.

"The contents of the entrance exams have been designed in accordance with the curriculum and are part of the degree program. Additionally, as a student at Diak, it is possible to apply previously acquired competencies as credits towards the degree," said Päivi Conlin, Diak's Health Education Manager.

In Northern Ostrobothnia, there is currently a shortage of approximately 1,000 registered nurses.

According to a recent Keva survey, the shortage of nurses has doubled in the past two years. Nationally, over 16,600 new registered nurses are needed. To address the situation, multiple simultaneous measures must be implemented. One way to alleviate the lack of skilled workers is to increase the number of graduates and strengthen the sector's attractiveness through development measures.

Diak's training program is a new way to tackle the problem.

"Our work at Diak aims to build a more sustainable and humane society. With tailored training, we can help address the shortage of healthcare professionals and train competent professionals for the field," said Conlin.

The nursing program designed for certified nursing assistants consists of 210 ECTS credits, and there are 25 places available in Oulu.

"With this training, graduates will become experts in a humane and diverse profession. At Diak, studying has a greater purpose and deep meaningfulness. At Diak, we build a better world for all of us," added Conlin.

In addition to submitting an application during the joint application process, applicants must register separately for the entrance exam course at Diak's Open University's online store from March 15 to April 14. Detailed instructions for registering for and completing the entrance exam course can be found on Diak's website.