...the medical student volunteer organisation IFMSA holding its national conference in Linköping in addition to celebrating its 60th anniversary.
“Between October 28th to 30th, we’re organising three days of lectures and reports on various projects. The organisation is represented nationally where doctors are being trained. Here in Linköping, our work among children and youths is what is most noticed by outsiders. For example the Nallesjukhuset (Teddy bear Hospital), we visited dozens of preschools in the region and put bandages on everything from teddy bears to tractors to take the drama out of health care for children.
Or Kärleksakuten, information on sex for teenagers, which won the National Encyclopedia Knowledge Prize last year,” says Eric Richter.
And logically, Kärleksakuten (Love Emergency Ward) is starting its group discussions at the conference off with the item “Condom Workshop - Up to Date! Pickups à la KA and speed dating”.
Erik Richter is a medical student in his ninth term at the Faculty of Health Sciences, the media liaison for IFSMA in Linköping, and also involved in BALL, a project to get more students to give blood.
“Over the last two years, we’ve succeeded in getting 230 students to be blood donors, and we hope to get even more.”
In Linköping, medical students are also working actively with “Papperslösas rätt till vård” (Health care for undocumented immigrants) by supporting the Tinnerbäck Clinic for undocumented immigrants.
“They also organize a ‘speakeasy’ once a year to collect money for the clinic.”
The conference, with around 120 medical students from Sweden’s six medical programmes, is also a 60th anniversary celebration.
How did IFSMA start?
“After the war, medical students went to the front to reunite the world through collaborating as part of non-profit public health projects. Students in Sweden participated in the founding of IFSMA (the International Federation of Medical Students Associations) which today has grown into one of the world’s biggest student organisations with over one million members and volunteer projects in over 100 countries,” Richter says.“In Sweden we’re working on clinical and research exchanges, human rights and peace issues, public health, primary care, and reproductive health. IFSMA also organizes exchanges where medical students get a chance at summer internships for a month or so.”
The anniversary programme reflects involvement in humanitarian issues such as lectures and discussions around sustainable assistance based on international projects in Africa, for example in Somalia.
Picture: IFSMA, demonstration in Stockholm for undocumented immigrants’ right to healthcare.
Read more about IFSMA
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Last updated: 2017-02-13