Welcome to the conference page of the Association of Nursing Directors of University Hospitals and Medical Universities in Germany
(VPU e.V.)

International conference online August 25th 2022 / 7.00 – 9.00 p.m.

Thinking Nursing Globally
Nursing Shortage, Challenges and Solutions

The Association of Nursing Directors of University Hospitals and Medical Universities in Germany e.V. and the Network of Nursing Science and Practice Development are holding a online conference on the evening of August 25th 2022, to discuss and deliberate the subject of worldwide nursing staff situation. The conference is aiming to create a joint exchange platform with nursing experts and managers from various countries to work out best practices, lessons learned and inhibiting factors globally. The main focus of the event is mutual learning from participating countries, in terms of their implementation and structures to counteract the shortage of nurses. The conference welcomes nursing management at all levels in the clinical setting.

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The free online conference will take place via Zoom Events. Registration with Zoom is required free of charge. The conference will be held in English only.

Download programme international conference


Howard Catton Chief Executive Officer International Council of Nurses

On behalf of the International Council of Nurses and our over 130 national nursing association members, thank you for hosting this critically important conference dealing with the global workforce shortage which I believe to be the greatest threat to health in the future. The World Health Organization’s State of the World’s Nurses reported a shortage of almost six million nurses in 2018.

The recent ICNM report, Sustain and Retain in 2022 and Beyond argues that shortages will be exacerbated “because of COVID-19 driven ill health, burnout,absence, reduced working hours, and early retirement”. In fact, ICN believes that the nursing shortage could be as many as 13 million in the next few years, unless action is taken now. The pandemic has shown us the centrality of health to all our aspects of life, not just our physical and our mental health, but our ability to be with friends and families, and to live in communities that are safe and cohesive, which also contributes to our happiness, safety and security. The events that we are seeing unfolding across Europe and the Ukraine, as well as the dreadful events in the Tigray, Afghanistan, Myanmar and elsewhere, also show the centrality of nursing and healthcare to our lives, and that health and peace are inseparable. These events have also shown us the terrible toll that the pandemic, wars, conflicts and natural disasters have on our nursing workforce. We have seen high infection rates amongst nurses through the pandemic, at least 180,000 tragic deaths of healthcare workers, enormous mental health, psychological pressures, abuse and violence. We know what we need to do. As the WHO Strategic Directions for Nursing and Midwifery say very clearly, "We must invest in nursing education, nursing jobs, and nursing leadership." ICN in our publication, Invest in Nursing and Respect Rights to Secure Global Health, has added two more objectives: protecting nurses' safety and investing in nurses' health and wellbeing. We include practical actions that countries, nurses, and others could taketo put the policy priorities into action.

The nursing shortage can no longer be ignored. Now is the time to take action! Thank you to the VPU’s Nursing Science and Practice Development Network for highlighting this critical issue. I wish you all a productive discussion.

Howard Catton, CEO, International Council of Nurses (ICN)

The International Council of Nurses, of which the German Nursing Association DBfK e.V. is a member in its report “Sustain and Remain and Beyond 2022” that we are facing a major shortage of nurses worldwide.

The title of the event “Thinking Nursing Globally” in this respect very well chosen. Nursing cannot be thought of in a limited way - because we jeopardize health in many countries and weaken global health when the shortage of nurses drives affected countries to recruit nurses from other countries in a big way. Other and overarching ways must be found to counter the shortage in professional nursing - especially in Germany. This conference can make an important contribution.

Dr. Bernadette Klapper, Federal Managing Director


Six experts from different countries each report on their health care system and nursing education system as well as the nursing staff ratio (skill mix in nursing care teams), consequences, solutions in the clinical setting.

Rodolfo C. Borromeo, EdD (Philippinen)

Rodolfo C. Borromeo is Vice President of Nursing at Manila Doctors Hospital and adjunct professor at various universities (University of Manila; Arellano University; St. Paul University; Concordia College). 

You can find the full CV here: CV_Borromeo

Prof. James Buchan

Prof Buchan is a Senior Fellow at the Health Foundation. He is also an Associate Professor at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Nursing at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS), Australia.

You can find the full CV here: CV_Buchan

Dr. Timothy Carrigan

Dr Timothy Carrigan ist Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) und Vizepräsident für Patientenversorgung am Loyola University Medical Center.

You can find the full CV here: CV_Carrigan

Helle Dokken

Helle Dokken is Director of Nursing at the University Medical Centre Göttingen.

You can find the full CV here: CV_Dokken

Kasia Przylepa

Kasia Przylepa works, among other things, as a lecturer in the foreign language department of the Medical University of Lublin, Poland.

You can find the full CV here: CV_Przylepa

Sixtus Ruyumbu Safari (Tanzania)

Sixtus R. Safari is the chairperson of the Tanzania Critical Care Nurses Association (TCCNA) and a board member of the African Federation of Critical Care Nurses.

You can find the full CV here: CV_Sixtus

Organisational committee:

Dr. phil. Manuela Bergjan

Nursing Science and Development, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin and Professor of Nursing Science at the Akkon University of Applied Sciences, Berlin

Dr. Uli Fischer

Head of the Department of Clinical Nursing Research and Quality Management at LMU Klinikum München, deputy Spokesperson of the Network Nursing Science and Practice Development

Dr. Shiney Franz

Nursing scientist at the University Medical Center Göttingen and Administrative Professor of Nursing, University of Applied Sciences, HAWK, Göttingen

Andreas Kocks

Nursing scientist at Bonn University Hospital, spokesperson of the Nursing Science and Practice Development Network at VPU

Nina Kolbe

Nursing scientist at the University Hospital Münster, deputy Spokesperson of the Network Nursing Science and Practice Development

Dr. Peter Nydahl

Nursing science and development
University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Kiel

Jennifer Luboeinski

Coordinator to support the Nursing Science and Practice Development Network in the VPU e.V.