The theoretical part of the training for 19 community nurse from the primary healthcare centres in Derventa and Prnjavor was completed in December 2020. Although it started in January 2020, the training was temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon obtaining the consent of the authorized institutions, the training in CN sites was resumed in October this year adhering to all the recommended epidemiological safety measures and was completed this month.

The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the exceptional importance of nurses in the healthcare system. Besides the hospital wards nurses caring for seriously ill patients, the community nurses deserve a special attention as well. During the past months, they continued to provide healthcare services to their most vulnerable patients in their homes. Telephone consultations and patient triage have to some extent replaced home visits to protect both patients and healthcare staff. Nurses have taken on new roles, such as taking samples for COVID-19 testing, working in quarantines, etc.

In order to adequately respond to patients’ healthcare needs in crisis situations but also under the normal circumstances, nurses ought to acquire a wide range of knowledge through formal, informal and continuous education as a part of continuous professional development. The recently completed training organized by ProSes project provided an opportunity for nurses from Derventa and Prnjavor to refresh and improve their knowledge and skills in various fields. A total of 50 theoretical units covered a wide range of different topics such as carrying for patients with chronic diseases, the elderly and palliative patients; nursing care for mothers, children, adolescents and the entire community, as well as current epidemiological topics and the provision of nursing care in crisis situations.

In the coming days, nurses will be provided with medical equipment for community nursing as well as computer equipment and office furniture for the nurses’ room within the healthcare center. Should the epidemiological situation allow, the completed theoretical training will be followed by practical training in the field with the support of local and international mentors/supervisors.