Specialist training that opens new doors
Three years ago she was accepted to a specialist training programme in Orthodontics. Sweden and Gothenburg felt very far away. Within a few months Khulood will have completed the studies and steer back to the hometown of Dubai. Having been trained at the internationally acclaimed Specialist Clinic of Orthodontics at the Institute of Odontology is opening new doors. We met her one hazy afternoon in Gothenburg to look back on her time in Gothenburg, events that have shaped her and #metoo.
Before moving she was nervous. On her mind were worries and thoughts of living in a country that far away, being surrounded by a new culture and learning a new language. Was she, a young Muslim woman, going to be accepted by the Swedes and colleagues at the clinic?
That unknown place turned out to be the right choice for her. She fell for the size and that special ambiance that is present in Gothenburg.
– Today I can safely say that Sweden is home to peaceful, understanding, helpful, accepting and non-judgmental people. I have made many Swedish friends, both through the programme and outside. And from all kinds of different countries.
– I’ve seen first-hand that no matter where you’re from, whatever your sexual orientation, religion or values, Sweden is embracing these differences. This is a safe-haven for people at need. Peace and harmony is encouraged here. I want people to know that.
The longing for holidays and trips back home have recently been replaced by a longing for Sweden, which she predicts will be present as she’s on the plane back to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This has become her second home, and changed her.
– This is where I’ve become more independent. Been shaped into something better. My baggage has been bigger although not heavier.” In it are all the friends and colleagues from Sweden and other countries who she’s met here. And she will carry it with her for the rest of her life, no matter the location.
The clinical work in her training has left its mark. A lot has happened, and some moments linger in her memory more than others.
– Once I received a bouquet of flowers from a patient towards the end of her treatment. She wanted to thank me for always making her feel safe, even through moments of pain. I will never forget that gesture or her words.
Each year the world is knocking on the door, offering events that make us raise our sights from our own perspective, at least for a few, well-selected moments. The last few months of 2017 brought new life to #metoo. Well-known phenomenon such as inequality and sexual harassments came to light and were widely spread online. In Sweden women from one business sector after another stepped out, which sent a clear signal about the magnitude of it.
– I’ve discussed this with my friends, both here in Sweden and in Dubai. The #metoo-debate has been recognised at home too, but not in the same direction or proportion as here. Many people have been surprised by how big of an issue this was in a country like Sweden.
Managers, supervisors or colleagues. She describes a clinic where everyone is supportive, encouraging and respectful with each other and towards patients.
– We’re like a family here and programme director Dr Andrea Bresin is the most caring person.
When asked about any personal experiences of harassments in a work-place she says, without a doubt: never.
– But I know how to report it, she says, describing a designated hotline service in Dubai.
Time to shift focus, from here to the future.
– Soon I’m a fully-trained specialist with a diploma from one of the best institutions within my field. This in combination with what university you have a degree from, means the most in UAE. That opens doors to higher positions. Not whether you’re a man or a woman.
You can’t miss her enthusiasm or her dedication. Just as it wasn’t by chance that she found her way here, chance won’t be leading her through her next step.
Sahlgrenska COPD centre in China
We got a quick talk with Anders Ullman, Head of the COPD Centre at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, who recently took part in the HOPE Forum in Guangzhou, China together with Donald Ribbentjärn, CEO at Sahlgrenska I.C.
Looking back on the Forum on the flight home, what came into your mind?
CODP constitutes a health issue of gigantic dimensions in China, with 12% of the male and 5% of the women suffering from the disease. They estimate the total number of patients to be above 100 millions, a number which is still increasing.
The root causes are considered to be:
– Frequent and widespread tobacco smoking
-Biomass smoking (indoor cooking, especially in rural areas)
It was an honour for me to be on site and share our know how about the Sahlgrenska COPD model and get to meet Professor Zhong Nanshan among others again.
Now when you are back in the office, the real work begins. What is the next step?
COPD is considered one of the absolut top threats to public Health in China, and is subject to significant improvement programs orchestrated from the government.
It was difficult for me to judge, how much they believe they can and want to be supported from us in Sweden. We are looking forward to continuing the dialogue and hope to see a delegation from China in Gothenburg later this year.
Opening hours April 30th and May 1st
The office is closed on April 30th and May 1st due to public holiday.
We are back in office on May 2nd.
Disability aid follow-up in Romania
During March a joint follow-up visit was made by Anders Lygdman, Senior Advisor for international aid at Sahlgrenska I.C. and Emanuel Wien, president of Agape Foundation to Romania. The purpose was to visit and study the work done by the Romanian organization Motivation, a major receiver of donated disability aids from Sweden.
Motivation was created in 1992 and provides support to persons with mobility disabilities, so they can receive appropriately prescribed, personalized wheelchairs and training for independent living. They cooperate with the Romanian National Health Insurance (NHI) and offer their services in the entire country.
Agape Foundation and Motivation have been partners since 2015. Sweden donates disability aids, mainly wheelchairs, to Motivation via Agape. During the trip, nine Motivation teams in nine different cities were visited. On all locations Motivation employees as well as beneficiaries from the Motivation support participated in the discussions. An average of 1,500 beneficiaries receive donated wheelchairs annually through the donations programme.
ILP the minimally invasive way
A minimally invasive version of the Isolated Hyperterm Perfusion (ILP) technique? True. Catch up with one of the researchers behind the development of MI-ILP. Roger Olofsson Bagge from Sahlgrenska University Hospital is currently on tour in Florida at the Symposium of Clinical Interventional Oncology (CIO) and Regional Cancer Therapies.
Entering the Imaging and Intervention Centre
Most of the days we get amazed by all the research and development surrounding us here at the Medical Hill in Gothenburg. Today we got to enter Operating room 8, one of four hybrid operating rooms at the Imaging and Intervention Centre at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. A hybrid operating room is a surgical theatre that is equipped with advanced medical imaging devices. In this one you will find a MRI-camera carried on rails, the most powerful yet in Europe.
Some parts of the Centre has been in use for some time, but in 2018 it will be complete. This is one of the last pieces of the puzzle and today the first surgery will take place. Minimally invasive surgeries have however already been performed at the Centre and the state of the art environment will enable the development of many more.
We met Stefanie Eriksson, a Medical physicist and Doctor in Physical Chemistry who recently joined the team. She and her colleagues will work in back office between and during surgeries to ensure that the equipment is used properly.
-I moved from Malmö for this particular job. I have previously worked in a hospital environment, but not as a Medical physicist. This Centre is the only one of its kind in Sweden and I find it interesting to be a part of the future development, says Stefanie.
Nearly 30 years of collaboration with Saudi Arabia
In November CEO Donald Ribbentjärn and Education Coordinator Erika Nettelbladt visited the Cultural Bureau of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Berlin. They met with the Embassy’s Academic Advisor Abdelrahman Ikhdeyr and discussed the cooperation regarding our specialist training which has been ongoing since nearly 30 years back. It is clear that the need for medical specialists in Saudi Arabia is continuing, and the demand for Swedish expertise is further high. But we can not rest assured that this will always be the case. To be a educational provider in the forefront requires continuous work with quality assurance.
We look forward to developing the programme , a prolonged partnership and to keep carrying out Swedish medical know-how into the world through all the doctors that have completed their specialist training at Sahlgrenska University Hospital.
Sweden to step up healthcare export
Swedish healthcare and life science is at the global forefront. The interest and demand for the know-how around the world is increasing. While it is currently an important part of the country’s export, there is a significant potential for growth.
The Swedish government has now announced that they want to invest in healthcare export. Hence the establishment of Team Sweden Care and Health, a high level group consisting of key representatives from the private and public sector. They will meet regularly under the leadership of the State Secretary at the Ministry of Health and Welfare. The aim is to conceptualize the Swedish healthcare offer to ensure delivery of complete solutions.
This is a milestone for us who export world-class healthcare expertise offered by the public healthcare system in Sweden. We look forward to work closely with Team Sweden Care and Health, Swecare and colleagues in other regions. Together we can step up Swedish healthcare export.
In areas where we have excellent track records, it is our duty to leave footprints internationally. We are convinced that the only way to succeed is by collaboration cross levels and sectors. United under one strong national brand we will be better equipped to take on new orders. This will enhance further growth and development of new healthcare innovations that can improve the quality of life both locally and globally. That we owe to the Swedish population and our customers worldwide.
Healthcare insight: Västra Götaland vs Valenciana
Recently our Marketing and Communications Manager visited Hospital La Fe in Valencia. After gaining an insight into the similarities and differences of our respective healthcare systems, she headed home with innovative solutions on her mind.
– From what I could tell, La Fe has amazing facilities and a management with modern leadership. Two key success factors for innovation and development within healthcare, says Paulina.
Below we share a few of the findings.
Strong reliance on the public healthcare sector
In both countries the population has access to a strong public health insurance. This comes with a firm belief that whenever I fall, the public healthcare sector will be there to pick me up.
While the insurance in Spain covers all expenses connected to healthcare, with the exception of dental care, in Sweden patients need to pay minor costs for medical visits at all levels.
Hospitalization at home models
In both Region Västra Götaland and Valenciana new innovative models are tried out to gain more efficiency throughout the treatment chains for certain patient groups. Although they share a common purpose, the hospitalization at home version in Valencia is more established than the mobile teams which have not yet been implemented broadly in West Sweden.
Primary care and university hospital – linked or detached?
Maybe the biggest difference of all, is to what extent the primary care centres and university hospital are linked together. In Spain you have a family doctor who is your main contact point at your appointed primary centre situated in close vicinity to where you live. Should you need hospitalization, the medical staff at the hospital as well as at the primary care centre has access to the same medical records system. This is not the case in Region Västra Götaland yet, but is in the pipeline.
In Sweden freedom of choice for patients is valued higher. Especially at the primary care centre level where you are entitled to choose the centre you prefer, not necessarily the closest one. Although covered by the public health insurance with same price levels for the patients, there are both private and public primary care centres competing for the patients’ attention.
Experts in Transplant surgery and other national assignments
Both La Fe and Sahlgrenska University Hospital have many national assignments, the latter currently has more than any other hospital in Sweden. This is of course everything but a coincidence, highly specialized care and research go hand in hand on both sites. A fun fact is that in 2016 both hospitals performed the same amount of 320+ transplant surgeries, give and take a few.
Lastly La Fe got to listen to how Sahlgrenska International Care AB’s healthcare export contributes to Region Västra Götaland’s and Sahlgrenska University Hospital’s international footprint.
Thank you María Pilar Muñoz Muñoz, Monica Almiñana Riqué and the rest of the management of Hospital La Fe de Valencia for the vivid discussions and world class hospitality.
To summarize, there are still a lot of questions without immediate answers, healthcare systems evolve in different cultural settings. They are complex entities where tradition and renewal co-exist side by side, sometimes creating friction. Lets never stop exploring how to take the next step so that populations across Europe can continue to have access to a healthcare of highest quality. Regardless if it is in the country where they are registered or next door.