European Core Competences Framework for Health and Social Care Professionals Working with Older People.

B Dijkman, Pieternella Roodbol, J Aho, S Achtschin-Stieger, A Andruszkiewicz, A Coffey, M Felsmann, R. Klein, I. Mikkonen, K Oleksiw, G Schoofs, C Soares, P Sourtzi

Research output: Book/ReportBookAcademic


The number of older people in Europe is increasing and the demand for care and support is changing. All
over Europe there is a need to educate students and professionals in health and social care with the right
competences to work with older people. Therefore this European Core Competence Framework for
health and social care professionals working with older people is developed in the context of
international cooperation between 26 universities and universities of applied sciences as part of the
European Later Life Active Network (ELLAN). The ELLAN is a Lifelong Learning Programme project funded
by the European Commission for the period September 2013 – September 2016. The consortium
included 26 partners from 25 countries in Europe.
The ELLAN project promotes European cooperation and exchange of innovation and good practice
related to the ageing population and to the educational preparation of those professionals in health and
social care that work with older people. The desired outcome of the ELLAN project is a better quality of
higher education related to the care and services of people in later life. The main result is this European
Core Competences Framework for health and social care professionals working with older people. The
project directly targets educators and management staff at the partner organizations and other higher
education institutions in Europe. The indirect target groups are the students, professional communities
and older people themselves.
The consortium conducted analyses of competences required by professionals working with older people
from the viewpoint of literature, from qualitative research among older people themselves in six
different countries and from quantitative research among professionals. These research studies were
used to develop this European Core Competences Framework. The competences are described according
to the CanMEDS roles1
. The competence framework is verified by two rounds of Delphi research among a
group of 21 experts and a group of 21 researchers from different countries all over Europe.
In addition, within the ELLAN project research was also conducted on the attitude of students to ageing
and working with older people and also on innovative educational approaches to gerontology that
influence the attitude of students. More information about the ELLAN project and the different research
reports can be found on
In this document the terms and concepts used are first defined, then the CanMEDS roles are described
for health and social care professionals working with older people. For each role, competences are
defined. The 18 competences are elaborated in performance indicators.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages43
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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