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Press release

Labor research in social services and health care

RWU Kompetenzzentrum Arbeitsforschung im Sozial- und Gesundheitswesen (KompIGA)
Felix Kästle

The Institute for Gerontological Care and Nursing Research of RWU, together with several partners from science and practice, is forming a "Competence Center for Innovative and Healthy Work in Social and Health Care in the Alb-Bodensee-Iller Region", or KompIGA for short. The new competence center began its work on April 1, 2024. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding the cooperation for a period of five years with a total of 8.5 million euros.

One of the sectors with the highest employment in the Alb-Bodensee-Iller region is the social and healthcare sector. This includes outpatient care services, care homes, workshops for people with disabilities and childcare facilities. These facilities not only support people in the region at different stages of their lives, but industry and commerce also benefit from the services provided by the facilities as an attractive location factor and through increased work capacity. However, the pressure on the social and healthcare sectors is growing: The pronounced shortage of skilled workers is already leading in some places to admission freezes being imposed, for example, despite high demand for nursing home places, and existing nursing home places cannot be allocated. The high work pressure also has an impact on employees' health.

Creating innovative and healthy workplaces in the social and healthcare sector

In order to attract new specialists and retain existing staff in the long term, the KompIGA project is adapting and testing new work approaches to the special features of the social and healthcare sector, for example new forms of work organization or flexible working time models. Trainee programmes for people returning to work are being piloted and the opportunities offered by digitalization are being used to relieve the burden on staff. KompIGA is also dedicated to the recruitment process for foreign nursing staff and pays particular attention to the integration of the recruited specialists in the region's communities.

RWU receives funding of 1.1 million euros

The "Competence Center for Innovative and Healthy Work in the Social and Healthcare Sector in the Alb-Bodensee-Iller Region" is being funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research with a total of 8.5 million euros over five years. RWU's sub-project will receive a share of just under 1.1 million euros. In addition to RWU, the universities in Reutlingen, Neu-Ulm and Kempten are involved in the competence center. Other partners from the field include the St. Elisabeth Foundation, Die Zieglerschen, Wohlfahrtswerk für Baden-Württemberg, Lebenshilfe Donau-Iller and Diakonie Baden. The competence center is coordinated by Reutlingen University.

Text: KompIGA / RWU