of the Final Conference of the ProInCa Project "Innovations in Nursing Education, Research, Leadership and Clinical Practice in Kazakhstan"

On December 10-11, 2020, was held the final international conference "Innovations  in  Nursing Education, Research, Leadership and Clinical Practice in Kazakhstan”, organized within the 3-year ProInCa project  - “Promoting the Innovative Potential of Higher Education in Nursing for Health Care Reform,” co-funded by Erasmus +.

Representatives of the Kazakh Ministries of Health, Education and Science, the Republican Center for Health Development, regional health organizations, and university clinics, national and regional associations of nurses, medical universities, higher medical colleges, medical colleges, practicing nurses and students, as well as international experts from Finland, the Netherlands and Slovenia attended the conference. To the participants were presented  the main results of the 3-year project. Also, there were discussed issues of ensuring the sustainability of the results obtained and other topical issues of the development of nursing in Kazakhstan.

Greetings to the conference participants were made by:  Mr. Massimo Pignatelli, Vice President for Medicine, Nazarbayev University, Dean of the School of Medicine; Ms. Soili Mäkeläinen-Buhanist, Ambassador of Finland to Kazakhstan; Tasbulatova Shaizada, Director of the National Office of the Erasmus + Program in Kazakhstan; Mendalieva Rauza, Chief Manager of the Department of Higher and Postgraduate Education of the Ministry of Education and Science of Kazakhstan.

Key reports were presented at the plenary session:

  • “Status and perspectives of nursing in Kazakhstan” (Gulnaz Tanatarova, Director of the science and human resources Department, Ministry of Health, Kazakhstan)
  • “Results and impact of the ProInCa project” (Johanna Heikkilä, ProInCa project coordinator, JAMK University of Applied Sciences, Finland)
  • “Leadership and collaboration is necessary to build a strong profession” (International Council of Nurses, President Annette Kennedy)
  • And etc.

Within the conference, panel sessions, a round table, a training cafe, and a section of electronic posters were organized in an interactive and innovative format.

The main topics of discussion were:

- “Center for Nursing Excellence - a tool for collaboration and knowledge exchange between the national and international academic nursing community and society”;

- “Strengthening cooperation between education, science, practice and the international academic community in the field of nursing”;

- "Forecasts of research in the field of nursing in Kazakhstan - the ProInCa project is completed, what is ahead?"

- "Modernizing Nursing Leadership in Kazakhstan: What Does the Future Look Like?"

Based on the results of the discussion, the participants of the Conference made the following conclusions:

1. The ProInCa project contributed to the introduction of international best practices in nursing in Kazakhstan. So, within the framework of ProInCa:

● The Center for Excellence in Nursing was created with an online platform ( and its regional offices based on medical universities (NAoE "Astana Medical University", NAoE  "Medical University of Karaganda", NAoE  "Semey Medical University", NAoE " ZKMU named after M. Ospanov ", South Kazakhstan Medical Academy, Kazakh National Medical University named after D. Asfendiyarov)

● a pool of national experts and trainers in education, science and nursing practice was prepared.

● Educational programs and modules on evidence-based nursing practice, leadership, research in nursing were developed for the master's, applied and academic bachelor's levels.

● Etc.

2. The main directions of activity of the regional offices of the Nursing Excellence Center have been determined:

  • communication functions in the region among local stakeholders in nursing;
  • organization of events (round tables, seminars) for information exchange, cooperation and training;
  • collection (on the platform, promotion and distribution of relevant and evidence-based nursing materials;
  • the dissemination of information regarding nursing education, research and practice.
  • Dissemination of clinical guidelines and tools for nurses.
  • Support of connecting nurses in their professional fields

Progress is noticeable in some areas of research in nursing: a number of master's theses are being carried out, research is being carried out by undergraduate students of universities and clinical research is carried out jointly with stakeholders. Research topics in the field of nursing are devoted to the study and improvement of the process of nursing care, nursing education, the role of nursing staff in helping patients with various nosologies. Research with the use of qualitative methods has become more widespread, as evidenced by interviews with specialists from nursing schools in October this year.

At the same time, the problems of infrastructure for scientific research, joint projects, interaction between universities and the health care system, higher colleges to promote research in nursing remain relevant. This gives reason to believe that these problems are barriers to the development of nursing science in Kazakhstan.

4. During the ProInCa project, nursing leadership modernization took a step forward, but the steps were small. While awareness of the importance of competent nursing leadership has increased, structures in healthcare organizations still need to strengthen the position and role of nursing leadership. Nurse leaders play a key role in healthcare by becoming change managers and developing quality nursing care.

Considering the above, the participants in the Conference propose:

1. Apply to the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan:

  • on providing support in ensuring sustainable development of the Nursing Improvement Center and its regional offices created on the basis of medical universities (NJSC "Astana Medical University", NJSC "Karaganda Medical University", NJSC "Semey Medical University", NJSC "ZKMU named after M. .Ospanova ", South Kazakhstan Medical Academy, Kazakh National Medical University named after D. Asfendiyarov).

2. Recommend to medical educational institutions:

  • to actively implement methodological recommendations and educational materials obtained within the bounds of the ProInCa project to develop the competencies of nurses in the field of evidence-based nursing, research and leadership (at all levels of education).

To advance research in Nursing:

3. Apply to the Ministries of Education and Science, Health:

  • on considering the possibility of increasing the state order for the training of bachelors, masters and doctors of philosophy in the field of nursing;
  • on the approval of national research priorities in the field of nursing and the allocation of scientific grants within these priorities.

4. Recommend the leadership of universities in Kazakhstan

to consider the development of research in nursing as a priority for the next five years;

to include in development plans articles for financing research infrastructure in nursing (expanding access to full-text editions in English, allocating internal grants, targeted funding projects);

5. Recommend the health departments of the regions of Kazakhstan, universities, colleges, republican clinics to use the sites of the regional offices of the Center for Nursing Excellence to initiate joint research projects, including on the basis of clinics and hospitals, in primary health care institutions, research centers.

6. Based on the potential created by the ProInCa project, partner universities to strengthen scientific links by concluding bilateral and multilateral memoranda and agreements on mutual assistance in conducting joint scientific research.

To promote leadership in nursing:

7. Apply to the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan, health departments of the regions:

  • on assisting in strengthening the role and responsibilities of nursing leaders and advanced nurses in health care organizations through the provision of a regulatory framework;
  • on providing support to medical organizations in their structural changes for the introduction of new leadership positions for nurses, subject to compliance with current legislation;
  • on providing the opportunity for chief and senior nurses to attend international conferences on nursing leadership and receive grants for leadership training abroad;
  • support universities in organizing flexible and accelerated training programs for chief and senior nurses with the purpose of raising their level to academic bachelor's, master's and PhD degrees in nursing
  • consider recognizing a professional association of nursing leaders that will support nursing leaders in their work to share best practices and improve nursing practice.

International conference participants

"Innovation in Nursing Education, Research, Leadership and Clinical Practice in Kazakhstan"