EIT Health at Uppsala University

Inspiring meeting between healthcare students and citizens of Uppsala


– Intergrating our knowledge in meeting with healthy individuals is really inspiring, states Uppsala University healthcare students Felix and Emma, while answering questions from the citizens of Uppsala during the Blodomloppet city race.

Thursday 18 May, the annual race Blodomloppet took place in Uppsala to promote physical activity and to encourage blood donation. For the first time at Blodomloppet, healthcare students at Uppsala University participated to answer questions concerning health, fitness and blood donation from the 13 000 runners, joggers and walkers of all ages.
– This is an opportunity for our students to meet and discuss with citizens of all kinds, from athletes to lazy bums. This is really valuable since we know that health issues engage and that most people have questions on how to keep up a healthy life style, says Mia Colliander, education coordinator at Department of Medical Sciences, Uppsala University.

University health care students need knowledge and competence on how to interact with citizens to inform about health promoting life styles, but also to gather information on needs and challenges to maintain and recover health. During Blodomloppet hundreds of visitors came to meet students from six different programmes to ask any questions and discuss challenges. They were also offered a number of simple tests and informed about what the results meant.
– Our students will collaborate in tomorrow's care team, and to plan and carry out this cooperative activity is an important part of their interprofessional learning. Together, they have very broad knowledge of how exercise is best performed to result in physical strength, the importance of recovery and how exercise affects and is affected by various health conditions, said Mia Colliander.
– We definitively agree! The possibility to intergrate our knowledge in meeting with healthy individuals and to discuss their thoughts about health and physical activity has been really inspiring said Felix and Emma, physiotherapy and nurse students, respectively.

Blodomloppet also provided opportunities to inform about the mission and vision of EIT Health.
– A key feature in EIT Health's activities is to reach out with information, motivation and innovations aimed at stimulating improved public health, and Blodomloppet is an event in line with the goals of EIT Health. Both students and representatives of EIT Health Campus Uppsala University appreciate this opportunity to meet people of all ages, listen to their needs and challenges and hopefully get creative ideas that can help achieve the health goals, says Catharina Svensson, pro dean of medical education and EIT Health Campus Coordinator at Uppsala University.
– It is surprising to see that so many people have no idea about, for example their blood pressure, said Nellie, soon to graduate as nurse.
Simon, physiotherapy student agrees:
– The hand strength measurement gives an indication about overall physical strength, and it was rewarding to hear people say that after testing “now I really have to take up my work-out”.

On the evening before the race a public lecture was given at the Uppsala University hospital. Professor Niklas Dahl gave an introductory talk about precision medicine.
– There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to medical therapy. We are all unique and therefor treatment must be individualized. To design therapies with a much higher precision and efficacy we need the knowledge of the interplay between genetic background, metabolism and life style – and environmental factors” said Niklas Dahl.

Erik Ståhl, the main speaker of the evening, was born with the very rare Wiskott–Aldrich syndrome, which is characterized by immune deficiency, spontaneous bleeding and recurrent infections.
– I need a transfusion of antibodies collected from about 4000 blood donors every fortnight to survive. My appreciation to these donors is immense. I also admire people that can use creative ideas to come up with solutions for a better, or even saved life. But we can all do our best to improve our own quality of life and contribute to support and help others. If I could wish, I would prefer a magic pill with antibodies instead of the 12 hour transfusion, which is very stressful for my body, said Erik Ståhl.

Mia Colliander, Educational Counselor, Department of Medical Sciences
Catharina Svensson, EIT Health Campus Coordinator

Latest updates