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Doekle Terpstra spreekt op Our Future Health

Op donderdag 26 mei heeft Doekle Terpstra gesproken op Our Future Health, een conferentie over de toekomst van de gezondheidszorg. Op deze dag waren meer dan 1.200 gasten aanwezig die luisterden naar verschillende nationale en internationale sprekers, waaronder patiënten, doktoren, verpleegkundigen, onderzoekers, techneuten en musici.

Doekle Terpstra spreekt op Our Future Health

Het thema van Our Future Health 2016 was: hoe kunnen we onze gezondheidszorg duurzaam (beter, betaalbaarder en toegankelijker) maken met behulp van startups? Doekle Terpstra, aanjager van het Zorgpact, mocht zijn visie delen over de toekomst van de gezondheidszorg. Doekle vertelde dat we één ding zeker weten: de technologie ontwikkelt zich razendsnel en dit biedt ons grote kansen op het gebied van zorg en welzijn. Maar hoe gaan we om met de veranderingen die technologische ontwikkelingen brengen? Doekle adviseert de volgende aanpak: ten eerste moeten we ons flexibel opstellen en ons constant kunnen aanpassen aan de veranderingen. Ten tweede moeten we onze aanpak veranderen: van top-down naar bottom-up, van individueel naar gezamenlijk en van gelijkmatig naar innovatief. Samenwerking is de nieuwe competitie. Ook moeten we de persoon (cliënt) centraal zetten, met technologie als ondersteunende kracht. Kortom: niet technologie alleen, maar samenwerking is de sleutel voor een goede toekomstige zorg.

Lees hieronder de volledige lezing.

"I believe that technology has a huge influence on our lives, and how we organise care and welfare. The life of a baby was recently saved in America with the help of virtual reality, home automation is offering people the possibility to remain living at home for longer, and there are care robots who can keep lonely older people company. This shows that technology is having a major impact on the way in which the care and welfare sectors are being structured. Care and technology are entwined with one another.

But this is hardly news: we already know that new technology is developing rapidly, and that this offers opportunities for technology applications in care and welfare. We are all familiar with that side of the care and technology movement.

 But there is another side to this movement, which is even more important. The changes in technology are so fast that it challenges the existing professions, the way we educate our new health care professionals and the way we organise live long employability. We do not yet know to what extent we, as a society, are able to embrace this new technology and keep our future health care available for all.

 We do know one thing for sure: we cannot accurately predict the future. So we also cannot predict which technological advances will be available in 5, 10 or 20 years' time, and how we will be able to implement them in order to offer everyone the best possible care.

 There is another thing we know for sure: the employment market in healthcare and welfare will change dramatically. Jobs will disappear in one place and new professions and jobs will appear in other places. And the existing coordinating mechanisms of educating young people for their profession and keeping professionals employable can’t keep up.

 We therefore need to focus on the question of how to create the adaptive environment in health care and health care education. What does the technological developments mean for the care professions and care education and more important, how can we embrace this. For students, academic staff and professionals. For citizens, clients and caregivers. For directors of employers, educational institutions and in local government.

 How do we deal with the changes which technological developments bring? Do we see them as threats, which we face anxiously? Or do we see them as opportunities, for which we are confidently preparing? And what is the way to prepare, now we learn that the old ways of coordination and implementation are insufficient?

 In order to offer everyone the best possible care now and in the future, in an environment which is changing at a rapid pace, two matters are essential: The first is that we must all be able to adjust constantly to the changing circumstances. The adaptive capacities of clients, students, academic staff, professionals and directors will have to increase. The society that learns to do this will benefit most, both in economical way as in quality of life.

 Secondly, we will have to do start working in a different way. From top-down to bottom-up, from singly to jointly and from stabilising to innovating. No one can solve this alone. Cooperation is the new competition! 

The Cabinet understands this challenge and understands that the old mechanisms and solutions no longer work in this context. As the driving force behind the Technology Pact and Care Pact, I have been asked by the Cabinet to get to work with an innovative approach. An approach which can offer a response to the challenges which technological developments are presenting to education and the employment market. An approach which has cooperation as its key concept, which puts regions in the driving seat and in which the national government facilitates and promotes regional cooperation.

 I’ll share an image on an issue that is relevant in different regions. Many people have been saying that we need more highly educated personnel for the challenges we are facing.  Forecasts were made with deficits on high educated personnel and with a surplus of middle educated personnel. But what are the underlying motives of this polarisation of the employabiltymarket? Is it true that more technology needs higher educated professionals? One of our partners gave a great example I think most of you will know.

In the film Intouchables, the paralysed lead character Philippe interviews one well-educated applicant after another, until he finally meets the carer Driss, who comes from the banlieues. He sees something in this exceptional young man, and gives him the job. A special bond then grows between them, because Driss sees Philippe as a human being and doesn't treat him like a pitiable, ill person.

 In other words, we always have to make the person the central focus, with technology providing support. And we will have to do this together, because only together can we create the care of the future. Because the care professionals who have to adapt to the opportunities and challenges offered by the new technologies need their employers to give them space and have confidence in them. And these employers need to be in dialogue with the care educators about what care students of the future must be able to do and know in order to be equipped for a constantly changing profession.

 With the Care Pact, we are promoting regional cooperation between care providers, academic institutions and municipal councils/provincial councils. An approach which is bearing fruit: regions are entering into agreements with one another and are achieving results: from setting up the new Care Technologist course to organising a regional flex pool in order to keep care professionals in the region.

The regional approach of the Technology Pact and the Care Pact is working, and is even being mirrored in a large number of other countries, such as Denmark, Belgium and Estonia. This is wonderful. Because with the regional approach, we are confirming the involvement of many professionals in structuring their own future. A future in which care and technology will be strengthening one another. I am convinced that this is the right approach, because I see that it is working. I invite all of you to contribute in your own regional network, and to turn challenges into opportunities. Because only in this way can we offer everyone the best possible care. So not technology alone, but cooperation is the key to our future health."