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Healthcare professions

In its Recommendations on higher education qualifications for the healthcare system (2012), the WR took into account future developments in the healthcare system and the increasing importance of interprofessional training elements. The WR is of the opinion that in future, qualified personnel working in the complex fields of nursing, therapy (physiotherapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy) and obstetrics should, in part, also receive university training. Ten to 20 percent of students from every training year should be qualified to work directly with patients in primary patient-oriented courses of study leading to a bachelor’s degree.

In July 2019, the German Science and Humanities Council (Wissenschaftsrat, WR) appointed a working group whose task it is to analyse the implementation status of the WR’s recommendations from 2012 and, based on this, to make recommendations for the development of healthcare professions.

Logo der HQGplus Studie zu Hochschulischen Qualifikationen für das Gesundheitssystem – Update

In the run-up to their consultations, an update on the HQGplus Study on Higher Education Qualifications for the Healthcare System – Update (HQGplus Studie zu Hochschulischen Qualifikationen für das Gesundheitssystem – Update) was carried out and its results published in spring 2022. With this study report (German version only), the WR head office follows up on other quantitative studies, which at irregular intervals highlight structural developments in the research and higher education system.

The quantitative and qualitative data collected in the HQGplus study on the development of health-related study programmes with patient- and client-oriented qualification goals, on the expansion of research and scientific career paths, as well as on the professional integration of health professionals with higher education qualifications, highlight the relevant developments in Germany.

The study focuses on the higher education qualification paths (German version only) for midwives, as well as nursing and therapy professionals whose responsibilities and activities directly affect patients or clients. The HQGplus study consists of a university survey and a survey of care institutions (hospitals and rehabilitation facilities). The quantitative surveys are supplemented by qualitatively oriented interviews. Interviews with experts examine the drivers and barriers of scientific discipline formation and development, as well as the conditions for a successful introduction and establishment of primary qualification study programmes (German version only).

The interviews with the representatives from healthcare institutions provide insight into the deployment of healthcare professionals with university degrees in patient- and client-orientated care.

The study was funded by the Robert Bosch Foundation, the Heinz Nixdorf Foundation and the Else Kröner-Fresenius Foundation. The German Institute of Applied Nursing Research (DIP) conducted the surveys on behalf of the WR.

The following contact persons are available to you at the Council’s office:

Dr. Beatrix Schwörer
Phone +49 221-3776-266

Dr. Elke Lütkemeier
Phone +49 221-3776-125