news 29.4.2022

GeNEdu blog: Building Living Labs

Authors: WEI Mei, LUO Yu, and XIE Ying, Guangzhou Health Science College (GHSC)

A Living Lab is one of the most inspiring models in the EU knowledge economy, which emphasizes people-oriented, user-centered, and joint innovation. Constructing Living Labs in the Chinese partner institutions is one of the key activities of the GeNEdu project.

According to the work plan and the existing conditions of the gerontological nursing training lab, the project team of GHSC created a requirement checklist for the lab construction after several rounds of discussions with experts from the European partner institutions. Experts referred to the EU standards, considered the practical conditions in China, and then put forward key suggestions for the lab construction which fully consider the needs and the real living conditions of the elderly, while also integrating as much advanced digital technology as possible to the lab.

The project team encountered many difficulties in the process of equipment procurement and lab construction due to Covid-19. However, with the active cooperation and coordination form various function areas of the GHSC, the rebuilt lab finally took on a new look with the theme of "Living Lab".

The equipment purchased with the EU project funds is mainly used in the high simulation training lab and hospice lab for gerontological nursing. In addition to the update of the hardware and equipment in the two labs, GSHC has gradually updated and renovated other training labs through self-financing. All these labs will serve the nursing teaching practice and provide a powerful resource for optimizing the training of nursing talents.

Except for the clinical practice course, all the gerontological nursing courses developed in the project are planned to be carried out in the living lab. The built living lab should not only meet the practical teaching needs of gerontological nursing courses, but also be open to the society and become a window of gerontological nursing education and services at an international advanced level.

To explore how to better apply the living labs to the gerontological nursing education and to serve the society, the GHSC team plans to invite elderly persons, representatives of elderly pension institutions, nursing staff, as well as equipment suppliers to participate in the living lab trial week. For the trial week, the project team elaborately designed three common gerontological nursing scenarios. The team members (teachers) will lead the students, adopt a competency-based teaching methodology, and carry out practical training on gerontological nursing in the Living Lab as well as scenario-based nursing services for the elderly.

 The following goals are set for the trial week:

  1. Students can improve the practical application of their professional knowledge in gerontological nursing.
  2. The elderly will get to experience the advanced living conditions and accessible facilities for aging people and obtain health knowledge corresponding to their age group.
  3. Nursing staff in gerontological nursing institutions will get to expand the concept of gerontological nursing and promote the concept of living lab.
  4. Equipment suppliers will be provided with the possibility to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of their equipment in practical application to enable further improvement and innovation.

We look forward to the launch of the trial week!

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Hospice lab

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High simulation training lab for gerontological nursing

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Wearable monitors, safety wristbands

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Portable operating table

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Floor or carpet solution to prevent falling down

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Intelligent sensor

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Skin pressure meter

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Training equipment for preventing Alzheimer’s disease

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Palliative care equipment (defibrillator monitor and nursing bed)

Read more about the GeNEdu project here!