On the 12th-13th of November 2019, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences (LSMU) Health Research Institute researchers’ team hosted an international training for other partners of the project. Two-day training gathered 45 participants from six project countries (Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, Russia, and Finland). The training was designed to innovatively and practically test the model for cross-sectoral cooperation prepared by Latvian scientists (Riga Stradiņš University), as well as integrate it into further activities of the “Healthy Boost” project.
LSMU representative dr. Agnė Slapšinskaitė opened the event and welcomed all the participants. Participants were introduced with the agenda and the goals of this training. Guest speaker Tomas Vaičiūnas (Lithuanian University of Health Sciences) delivered the first presentation titled “Boosting public health”. He approached the major challenges in public health area, emphasized that public health is often overlooked not only in Lithuania but also in other countries. Tomas added that non-communicable diseases are rising and currently known and implemented interventions are not working to their best. He further stressed, that better results might be obtained if cross-sectoral cooperation competences are improved to deal with non-communicable diseases.
During the introduction to the module and the concept of the training, the Latvian team (Rīga Stradiņš University) members made a brief presentation on the process of developing a Model of Cross-sectoral cooperation. After that, participants were divided into seven different teams according to a specific colour and theoretically introduced with the model by LSMU researcher Lukas Galkus.
Lukas introduced participants with the individual cases and Mind Map app (further activities of the model simulation used this app). Each groups had from 5 to 6 roles and all group members used a QR Code scanner app in order to obtain information about their role. Each member in their groups had to discuss the given case and answer questions for five tasks (i.e., tasks were structured according to main model domains: Risk identification, Leadership, Communication, Coordination, and Motivation) and each task was carried through – Mapping, Planning, Implementation, Assessment stages. During this simulation, the Cross-Sectoral Cooperation model has been tested in several ways – working in the groups, analysing cases individually and working in pairs. Solutions for each case were presented through Mind Map app, posters (gallery) and oral presentations.
During the second day’s training activity further practical implementation of the model continued. Participants picked up to assess the last domain of the model – Motivation in their specific situations. This activity involved presentations of their group work with the practical application of the model. Members of the group had a possibility to share their impressions about the model and how it could be implemented. Later on, the training focused on national level work as participants tested the model in the national groups. Participants in national teams discussed current problems in their cities whilst trying to assess their current stage – Mapping, Planning, Implementation or Assessment. Once the stage was selected the team was asked to go through all domains of the model – Risk identification, Leadership, Communication, Coordination, and Motivation and answer the questions. At the end of the training, representatives of each country presented the results of the second day's work and their plans for the near future. From our perspective as a hosting institution we believe it was two intensive days filled with technology, challenges and many opportunities to improve the skills of cooperation once testing the created model.