Study trip to Udine and Ljubljana: 1st – 3rd December 2022


Intercultural Competence (Lecturer Sabine Spanz), 3rd Semester, Master in Health Management

From December 1 to 3 the students of the third semester of the master’s program Health Management were given the opportunity to gain an insight into the organization of the healthcare systems of our neighboring countries (Italy and Slovenia) as part of the lecture “Intercultural Competence”. This was ensured by visiting renowned health institutions.

Mental Health Community Center in Udine

In Udine the students were warmly welcomed by the tutors of the nursing bachelor’s degree of the University of Udine, Mr. Renzo Moreale and Mr. Sebastiano Fogolin, and guided to the first institution, the Mental Health Community Center in Via Pozzuolo. The Mental Health Community Center is a contact point for citizens with mental health disorders and coordinates prevention, treatment and rehabilitation in the local area. Its multi-professional team works together with family doctors as well as different associations and agencies of the territorial network. Apart from caring for those who come to the center, the staff also visits and consults patients in their homes. After an introduction to the origins and guiding concepts of this institution the students visited the Comunità 9 (on the same premises), which originally was a psychiatric ward but was closed because of the Basaglia Law in 1978 and has changed into an open place, where patients can participate in different activities like artistic work, spor-tive events, cooking, gardening etc. In summer time the parklike area of these grounds is also used as location for different public events like concerts, arts galleries, etc. to help reducing the stigma of mental health.

During the lunch break back at the university, the students had a chance to meet nursing students of the University of Udine to learn more about becoming and working as a nurse in Italy. After that Mr. Renzo Morale gave a presentation on the Italian healthcare system, the bachelor’s and master’s degree program in nursing in Italy before paving the way for the Community Care Organization Meeting with the community care managers und two dis-trict nurses of Udine.

Simulation Center in Ljbuljana

The second part of the student trip began the next morning with a visit to the Ministry of Health of Slovenia in Ljubljana, where the head of the Health Care and Insurance Division, Dušan Jošar, gave a presentation on the Slovenian healthcare system, referring in particular to its financing, organization, health status of the population and digitalization.

In the afternoon, the students visited the Community Health Center Ljubljana in the center, which is one out of more than sixty primary health centers that can be found in Slovenia. The medical director, Tea Stegne Ignjatovič, and the head of the Institute for Research and Development of the Community Health Center, Prof. dr. Zalika Klemenc Ketiš, provided an insight into the health care system of Slovenia, the Community Health Center and its Institute for Research and Development. One of the highlights was the visit to the Simulation Center, where nurses and doctors can train life-threatening and novel situations through simulation. The head of the Simulation Center, Mr. Uroš Zafošnik, made the CUAS students experience their team working skills by throwing them instantly into a situation with a patient in a life-threatening situation.  
The short trip was concluded with a tour through the center of Ljubljana on the last day of the stay. This, however was not a typical city tour for tourists but one offered by Terra Vera, an NGO that cares for issues like integration or social inclusion. One part of the students did a Classic Migrantour with a highly motivated guide from Croatia. The other group was guided by a Columbian street performer and clown who made the students experience the city with their senses and also gave them a glimpse of his own culture through music and dance.

After two years of travel restrictions, students have finally had a chance to learn outside their lecture halls again and on top of that enjoy a great time as a group. So, the trip was definitely worth it!

Author: Alexandra Wernet