Past Attendees Biography

Pirkko Kouri

Savonia University of Applied Sciences Ltd, Finland


Title: Competences in building digital nursing

Pirkko Kouri, Ph.D. PHN, R.N.,
Savonia University of Applied Sciences Ltd, Finland
Abstract: Today healthcare is reaching our many industries in capturing, managing, and using data. Dealing with change in a healthcare organization can be one of the biggest challenges and opportunities in the area. Digital health is here. The goal of digital health is to support both the renewal of health care and patients’/citizens’ activity in the maintenance of their health and wellbeing by improving information management and increasing digital services, for instance. Furthermore, mobile technologies, digital information and communication technologies, sensor solutions and data analytics help to organize and even create health care services and to develop many-sided care paths. Technological solutions for health purposes are available around us. The role of citizen becomes more active and that effects the interaction between nurses and patients/clients. Health care is being forced to change its thinking from passive patients to active customers and adjust operations accordingly. Nurses need new competences, which means ability to do digital health well, and a nurse has important skill that is needed in order to use digital health options in her/his daily work.
Professionals' knowledge, skills and competence is a prerequisite for the development of digital services. Supporting digital skills of the nursing field is today even more needed in the context of the changing nature of working environment. Making nursing more central to health policy and technology design and ensuring that nurses can use their skills, including digital skills, to their full capacity, leads to improved health and care services, enhancing the achievement of universal health coverage. Furthermore, nurses with the right knowledge and skills will add considerable value and form an important link between technological innovation, preventive health and disease treatment. Nurses need to build a strategy for digital health nursing.
Based on the results of recent Finnish DigiSote project the competence of digital nurse can be seen as special expertise. The competence has seven elements: technology and knowledge management competence, interaction and communication competence, guidance and counselling competence, competence in the development of services and applications, multidisciplinary collaboration and networking competence, ethical competence, and self-management competence. This all need education and training. The lack of training for nurses creates barriers to access digital health care. Presentation encourages nurses to become more ‘digital nurses’.
The presentation enlightens what digital health is and what are prerequisites nurses need.
Audience Take Away:
  • Digitalization is penetrating the society more and more, healthcare is no exception. Presentation gives information how digitalization affects in nurse work in different surroundings. The interaction between a patient/client and nurse will change. EHealth strategies for nurses are needed, example from Finland.
  • Digital health education and training will be crucial to upskill the nurse workforce. Brief introduction of both Bachelor of Nursing and Master in Digital Health programme.


Pirkko Kouri PhD, PHN, RN. Principal Lecturer in Health Care Technology. In charge of the Master in Digital Health Programme, member of the multidisciplinary master programme teachers’ team. Many national development projects related to Master education and eHealth; international projects both in health informatics education and in mother-child-mobile tech area in Africa, and China. Her memberships: Vice-President and national member in International Society of Telemedicine and eHealth (ISfTeH), the first female vice-president; Member of IMIA-NI education working group; Board member and secretary in Finnish Telemedicine and eHealth Association (FTeHS); Chair of Regional Cancer Association.

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