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Elderly care competence in Poland for the need in Germany

As one of the fastest-growing societies in Europe, the demand for services for seniors in various sectors is increasing in Poland, but also in Germany. Due to market needs for professionally trained, qualified and certified employees in Poland, TÜV Rheinland Academy has started developing different programs for elderly care, oriented to the requirements of the German market.

Many employment agencies in Poland employ their teams in the elderly care sector, particularly in Germany. In 2011, one of the most significant association of employment agencies was interested in training for the staff who take care of seniors and working abroad especially in Germany as the elderly care assistant. Even though they already have many years of experience, the association wanted to train the staff and increased their competencies with certified qualifications also recognized on the German market. Therefore, TÜV Rheinland Academy Poland developed a customized project for the employment agencies and their customers.

Due to restrictive regulations of the German market, German employers increasingly demand the qualifications and competencies of employees in the elderly care industry. These regulations define the scope of requirements for people performing care and care activities. The Polish training meets these requirements — divided into two modules the training offers one self-learning part (in the form of scripts) as a preparation for the second module which covers 80 hours of intensive workshops.

On the first day of the workshop, there is a written exam from the self-learning part. With the final personnel certification the Polish attendant of elderly care now stands out in the market, especially in contrast to non-qualified people in this branch. The competence of the staff is essential in assessing the quality of care services provided. Careers, apart from detailed theoretical and practical preparation, must also have appropriate interpersonal skills. In this industry, high sensitivity to the needs of older people is of paramount importance, where the basis is the knowledge and understanding of those under care.

E-learning Module “Dementia diseases”

Initially, the training for the customized project for employment agencies was based on the German “Nursing Assistant” (Pflegehelfer) program with the exam and the final personnel certification. After three years of experience with this target group, TÜV Rheinland Poland gained the know-how to develop other trainings specified for the local market needs. One of the developed training contains a three day short workshop plus an e-learning module about the topic “Dementia diseases”, to fulfill the training content. This training was developed under an EU project dedicated mostly for the employees who already work with seniors in daily houses or nursing homes.

TÜV Rheinland Academy Poland pays particular attention to the quality of the training programs. An essential factor during the workshops is the ability of the students to use rehabilitation beds, wheelchairs, blood pressure monitors and small care devices properly. However, the ability to communicate with seniors and activate them again and again as well as the soft skills of the accompanying staff also play a major role. To date, our colleagues in Poland have trained more than 200 participants in various courses.  Although there is a great need for training in the elderly care sector, the main focus of investment has long been on infrastructure or equipment. Fortunately, it is becoming apparent that awareness of the qualification needs of the personnel is also slowly increasing in nursing care for the elderly. TÜV Rheinland Academy Poland is prepared to make its contribution to ensuring that the level of competence within the sector rises as quickly as possible in favour of the elderly.

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