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My position is Professor of Psychiatry at the Division of Psychiatry, Dept of Clinical Sciences in the Medical Faculty, Umeå University. I am also an Assoc professor (docent) in mathematical and genetical statistics. .

Theoretically, my work tasks consist of three equal parts: Consultant Psychiatrist at Norrland's University Hospital, Teaching, and doing Research. In practice, the relative work load of each of these three components varies throughout the year. The third component, Research, is the one that can get suppressed if the other work loads are high. However, most active researchers enjoy their work, and therefore spend a lot of their free time in this activity in any case.

Information about Umeå can be looked up at, for example, www.wikipedia.org

The hospital of Umeå

The university town of Umeå in northern Sweden





Aurora Borealis in reality. To learn more about this phenomenon, click here(IRF) or here(US) or here(Swe)











Umeå university, with its statue called "norrsken" (Aurora Borealis)


PSYCHIATRY: Most health care in Sweden is run by the government or the county councils, and the same is true of the university hospital where I am employed. My clinical experience in psychiatry derives from emergency wards, from outpatient units, and from treatment centers. I have also been the head of a psychiatry clinic in northern sweden (södra lappland) for a few years. The trend nowadays is to try focus on outpatient care services or treatment centers rather than in wards - the old mental hospitals which used to contain thousands of patients are gone. The reasons for this were mainly earlier "institutionalization" of the patients and overtreatment. As the mental hospitals were closing down one by one, the municipalities were assigned the task of developing suitable housing and suitable activity for the discharged patients. Some municipalities managed this rather well, but other municipalities could not keep pace with this, with negative consequences for the patients. Also, quite a few patients felt lonely in scattered housing in contrast to the social togetherness that the patients had with each other and the organized activities that were found in the old mental hospitals. On the whole, however, these new developments have led to better quality of life for most persons with mental disorders. Working as a psychiatrist requires a bio-psycho-social perspective. Also, as a psychiatrist, one has to be good at and comfortable with team-work together with professionals having other background, like sociology, nursing and psychology. In psychiatry, it is important to involve the patient as an active partner with his or her own opinions and wishes in the treatment of the problems.



A bio-psycho-social perspective

TEACHING: I am involved in teaching psychiatry to students at the medical school enrolled to become physicians. I also teach psychiatry to students enrolled in other programs, like psychology, nursing or speech therapy. In the past, for many years, I have taught social medicine and epidemiology. During that period, I also taught medical statistics to medical students and researchers in the faculty of medicine. Before that, I taught for some time at the dept of mathematical statistics in Umeå. Actually, my experience as a teacher began in Kenya in my youth, as a high school teacher in Nairobi, after having obtained a diploma as a teacher from the Kenya Science Teachers College (KSTC). This college was built within a foreign aid program of the Swedish government.

The three years 1966-1968 at KSTC were pivotal in forming the foundations of my academic life.

RESEARCH: Research and education have been a passion for me since I was in my late teens. I would say that during the course of my university studies in Sweden, I have studied things that I found interesting, and done research in areas that I found exciting and palatable. Such behaviour can often lead one to become a "Jack of all trades but master of none". Subjectively, I often feel myself neither a Jack of any field nor a master of any field. From this perspective, I have only browsed through mathematical statistics, statistical genetics, social science, biological psychiatry, and epidemiological psychiatry. My research and education are taken up in other sections of this site.








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Four snapshots of Umeå

Umeå university campus in winter




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