Act 20: Oulu Self-Care Services
Oulu Self-Care Services is a personal online welfare service for residents of Oulu. It is Finland’s most extensive online service that provides residents of a municipality with access to health and social services – at any time and any place.
Users can log in to the Oulu Self-Care Services using their bank codes and book laboratory appointments, access their laboratory test results, send and receive messages, and enter measurements taken at home, such as blood pressure measurements, for example. Asking questions is free of charge and a health care professional will respond to your message within three working days. The service also has various diaries and tests to help residents of Oulu to look after their own well-being. One of the newest features, which has become hugely popular, is the enquiry form for income support application decisions.
“The service saves time and effort. We have calculated that an online discussion is three to four times quicker than even a short appointment,” says Keijo Koski, Health Director, the City of Oulu.
Skills through training
The award-winning Oulu Self-Care Services were launched in 2008. The online service was a new innovation, also on the national scale. The online service makes communication easier, and it also improves the well-being of residents of Oulu and encourages them to take care of themselves: weight, exercise, and food diaries all provide motivation for a healthy lifestyle.
From April, Oulu has been offering its residents free training on how to use the Self-Care Services in cooperation with the Meritulli–Heinäpää residents’ association. The purpose of this training is to introduce the electronic services to its residents. Service presentations are held in places where there are lots of people but training sessions for people who do not have much experience with computers are held in IT classes with a maximum of 9 participants.
“Courses lasting two and a half hours will be arranged every week in the daytime and evenings while there is sufficient demand. In addition to the course instructor, an IT trainer is also present. This ensures that those participants who are less familiar with computers will get personal instruction. In the autumn, training will also be organised in Oulu’s other municipalities,” explains Matti Svala, Oulu Self-Care Services instructor.
Information boards at health centres in Oulu also provide information and guidance on the Self-Care Services. The Oulu10 service point provides personal and confidential advice in peaceful premises in the summer. You can find Matti Svala at Oulu10 on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 am – 2 pm between 4th and 25th July. Advisory services on the use of the Self-Care Services will not be provided on Friday 20 July.
The Oulu Self-Care Services and the training provided to its residents are only available in Finnish.
For additional information, please contact:
Course schedule and registration: www.katoppa.fi
Matti Svala, Oulu Self-Care Services instructor, 0855844011, 044 7034011, firstname.lastname@example.org