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Vall d'Hebron and the UOC train 145 residents in communication skills, the scientific method and bioethics

  Foto: Unsplash/Piron Guillaume (CC)

Foto: Unsplash/Piron Guillaume (CC)

Anna Torres Garrote
The hospital and the University have designed a cross-disciplinary online training programme for the hospital's residents

Programa de formació transversal per a residents (Cross-disciplinary Training Programme for Residents) is the name of the online training programme received by 145 residents at the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron since September 2018. Each subject's content material has been written by expert physicians in each field at the hospital. The Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) – through UOC Corporate – has turned this training into an online course.


This programme encompasses the courses that are compulsory for all residents, in accordance with the medical specialities' official programmes. It contains the following modules:

  1. Communication skills for improving the doctor-patient relationship with real patients
  2. Applying the scientific method to clinical research
  3. Bioethics

This training used to be given on-site but, in late 2018, Vall d’Hebron's Teaching Department decided to transform these subjects into an online course. With a track record of almost 25 years in e-learning, the UOC was chosen to make this happen.

A total of 145 residents have already completed the first and second modules and, in April, they will do the third. This year, a new call will be organized for the hospital's R1 residents.

Physicians at the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron, experts in each subject area, were in charge of compiling the course materials. This content was then developed by UOC Corporate's team of educators and technical staff to transform it into multimedia materials that combine audiovisual and text resources.

As Elisabet Giner, UOC Corporate's project manager for this training course, pointed out, "Our collaboration with Vall d’Hebron offers a unique opportunity to work with medical professionals who are experts in each of the areas, adapting technical content and turning it into interactive multimedia material with a high learning value that takes into account the goals pursued by the programme and the reality of its target group, the hospital's resident doctors". Giner also highlighted the coordination and commitment of the Teaching Department, which has played a "key role throughout the process, both in the initial definition and in the implementation". This agreement has become a strategic project for UOC Corporate, focused on developing the content and learning model for an online training course at a referral hospital.

Dr Mònica Rodríguez, deputy director of Teaching and head of studies at the Hospital Universitari Vall d’Hebron, considers that "the agreement between Vall d’Hebron and the UOC is an alliance whose goal is to lay the foundations for generating synergies in health and teaching. We have started with part of the cross-disciplinary training received by our residents, in which Vall d’Hebron's professionals provide the content and the people at the UOC bring it to life online. Our aim is for the collaboration to broaden in the near future to include the use of virtual reality to train residents in non-technical skills and also to design online master degree courses targeting health professionals", she concluded.


Medical residency at Vall d’Hebron

Vall d’Hebron is one of Spain's largest teaching hospitals, with a total of 163 places offered in 47 specialities. These places are open to graduates in medicine, pharmacy, psychology, biology, chemistry, physics and nursing.

Its commitment to specialized health training is backed by a consolidated track record in teaching, which started in 1968, when it became one of the first hospitals to adopt the MIR system for medical residencies.

The hospital works with external teaching teams in family and community medicine and occupational medicine, and the residents spend between one and two years of their training at the centre. In addition, every year it receives large numbers of residents from other Spanish centres, who come to perform specific clinical rotations.


UOC Corporate, a partner for organizations

UOC Corporate was created with the aim of becoming the benchmark partner of organizations that are committed to an innovative learning network for training their professionals as a way of improving their competitiveness. In addition, it designs innovative solutions in response to the needs of companies and institutions and supports them in implementing these solutions.

It also provides all of the value-added services to organizations through which the University hopes to enhance employment opportunities, encourage the transfer and dissemination of knowledge and, jointly with businesses, explore new scenarios for cooperation to contribute to the competitive strength of the business sector.

More than 80 clients have placed their trust in UOC Corporate in the last 3 years, including Banco Sabadell, Grupo Catalana Occidente and Affinity. In total, it has provided training to more than 5,000 professionals.