Dmitry Medvedev meets with participants of the programme to train healthcare and education managers
Dmitry Medvedev: Good afternoon. I wish all of you a good day. Today we are meeting with participants of the 2011-2014 programme to train healthcare and education managers, in other words, with you. You will tell me about your training, the knowledge you can receive and the things that are missing.
The modernisation of the healthcare and educational systems is a clear priority. We must develop a modern image for these two vital areas. We understand that this cannot be done with some immaterial figures or functions, but only by people. This is why our modernisation programmes include the training of modern managerial personnel. This training project was launched in 2011 in every region of Russia. The venue for this project is the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, the largest school for training public managers. This training programme is also a reliable platform for the collaboration of federal and regional leaders and for testing the guidelines of our activities in this sphere. It also provides for promoting the best technologies and practices, as all such projects usually do. Its best plans are open to the public on the programme’s website, as far as I know and they are a success, I hope, among those who do not take part in this programme but nevertheless use this resource.
It is clear that, given the current developments in the country, we should rely not only on Russian but also on foreign experience. Of course, we should be selective when applying foreign experience to Russian realities. Yet, certain general methodologies should probably work, and some specific ideas as well. This programme includes training in other countries. I understand that these trips will cover an increasingly broad geographical area. So let’s discuss once again how interesting and effective this programme is and what could be improved about it.
However, even before we start, I would like to inform everybody of a number of documents I recently signed which are important for modernising secondary education. One is a Government Resolution granting federal subsidies to Russian regions for modernisation of secondary education in 2013. We have allocated 40 billion roubles, as per our agreements. Another is a Government Directive granting federal subsidies to pay to the best teachers as encouragement for their work – 200,000 roubles each to a thousand of best teachers in 2013. And the third Government Directive granting federal subsidies to regions to pay teachers benefits for class tutorship. This is something we routinely do every year; around 800,000 teachers will receive these benefits in 2013. This is just to inform you so that you know where we are.
Dmitry Livanov (Minister of Education and Science): On the whole we have a high opinion of this programme and its results. We value its orientation to practice and its emphasis on projects. It is very important that not only information about these projects is published on the site, but also about their results. I think the fact that a relatively small region has saved 200 million roubles…
Dmitry Medvedev: This is a good figure.
Dmitry Livanov: …and has used it for other purposes like healthcare is very important. It is also great that more children are now engaged in extracurricular activities and more are coming to school because it has become more interesting for them to study there.
The second important point is direct contact between the people who determine policy at the federal level with the participants in the programme. This contact is important for both sides – I cannot agree more on this. It is no less important for us than for people who come to study from the regions. Therefore, we have a vested interest in the continuation of this programme and its extension to other levels such as preschool education, which is crucial for us, and additional education. We want to unlock synergy by involving many more top educational managers in projects. Obviously, the success of any institution – be it a school, outpatient clinic or hospital – largely depends on those who are in charge of them. We understand that the role of the individual is very high in this respect.
Dmitry Medvedev: Absolutely.
Dmitry Livanov: The competence of top managers, their ability to work with a team and set assignments are vital in this context. Thank you.
Dmitry Medvedev: Thank you. Ms Skvortsova, please go ahead.
Veronika Skvortsova (Minister of Healthcare): Thank you very much. Mr Medvedev, ladies and gentlemen. The Ministry of Healthcare appreciates the work that has been done in this direction and this programme. We consider it necessary to continue this education. Mr Medvedev, of course I’d like to return to your question. All medical schools have a chair of healthcare management; standard programmes have been upgraded and graduates receive some fundamental knowledge, but in this case we are talking about a more detailed comprehensive management programme.
Dmitry Medvedev: Excuse me for interrupting you. They have these chairs but, to be honest, what matters is who the teachers are.
Veronika Skvortsova: Absolutely.
Dmitry Medvedev: These people must understand how the economy of healthcare and the economy of education are developing today. If they have gotten there by accident or changed their profession from teachers of the political economy of socialism, this is a bit of a different matter.
Veronika Skvortsova: We are paying much attention to this. Mr Medvedev, we have launched upgrading courses for all teachers and professors. This is one of the issues we want to discuss with Mr Mau (Vladimir Mau – rector of the Russian Presidential Academy of the National Economy and Public Administration). I absolutely agree with Mr Mau on the high creative potential of this programme. Its participants – regional top managers and chief physicians of healthcare institutions – already have professional experience, and this allows them to raise the most urgent problems of the industry and quickly come up with original and interesting proposals after brainstorming. We discuss these proposals together. Our ministry has not ignored a single of these interesting projects in the last two years. My colleague has already mentioned that we are launching pilot projects. In our work on regional healthcare programmes to 2020, we have already included some interesting ideas. Our main goal is to streamline the system and use its enormous internal resources – both its personnel and material and technical basis. This is why we support this programme and will take part it its implementation. Thank you.
Dmitry Medvedev: Thank you Ms Skvortsova. Ladies and gentlemen, at the conclusion of our meeting I’d like to say that judging by everything, you all want to retain this programme because it is so useful. It was praised not only by the heads of the relevant university, ministries and departments but also by those who have studied under it.
I recall that when we launched national projects some time ago, the situation was somewhat different both in education and healthcare, and, most importantly, in our understanding of what to do. I went to schools and medical institutions and when I started talking about some new forms of management (norms of per capita funding), I saw fear in the eyes of school directors and chief physicians of hospitals and clinics. They did not understand what it was all about. It seemed to be an encroachment on the holiest of the holy and tantamount to the degradation of medicine and education. We received letters from people who asked us not to rush or make any decisions that could upset the existing balance. They asked us not to introduce new economic, institutional or legal forms. Needless to say, we must act with caution, while moving forward by all means, and with the understanding of what we have achieved at each particular moment. Some 15,000 people have been trained and this is a very serious figure. Considering the total number of managers in education and healthcare, we must continue this work and you must use your knowledge in practice – I sincerely hope you will. What we are talking about today is not theory but practical knowledge of how to run a school or clinic.
Thank you. Goodbye!