Laurea handles evaluation for international rescue exercise

Laurea University of Applied Sciences is participating in a joint international rescue exercise for Barents Region countries. Hosted by Finland, Barents Rescue 2015 will be held at Levi in Kittilä on 28 September– 2 October 2015. More than 40 organisations from Finland and key actors from the neighbouring countries of Norway, Sweden and Russia will be involved. All in all, several hundred rescue and medical professionals and volunteers will take part in the exercise.

The countries in the Barents Region have an agreement on provision and reception of rescue services in northern regions. The parties to the agreement take turns arranging the exercise, which is held every two years. Under the leadership of the Ministry of the Interior, Crisis Management Centre Finland (CMC Finland) is handling preparations for the exercise being held in Finland.

The starting point for the rescue exercise in Kittilä is a situation in which the resources of the rescue organisations in Lapland and the northern region are not sufficient to cope with the situation at hand, and assistance is requested from neighbouring countries. The exercise scenario involves the simultaneous occurrence of a major flood, traffic accident and mine accident.

A working group from Laurea University of Applied Sciences will be responsible for evaluating the planning and implementation of the rescue exercise. The evaluation material will be used to support planning of future exercises and to develop the cooperation systems being practised. Students from Laurea's Master's Programme in Crisis and Special Situation Management will also participate in the evaluation.

- Evaluation, or reporting, of what was learned and what could be done better the next time often plays a very small role in a rescue exercise. A proper process for evaluation has not been developed yet, explains Director Isto Mattila, who is in charge of Research, Development and Innovation (RDI) projects at Laurea.

Laurea intends to use the Barents Rescue exercise to develop an evaluation model that can be used in a variety of future exercises related to safety and health care. At the same time, evaluation will be made an integral part of Laurea's teaching and RDI activities.'

- The Barents Rescue 2015 exercise will be a valuable reference for Laurea in terms of evaluation competence, says Isto Mattila.

Modified 9/16/2015 9:01 AM