Through Swedish HealthCare, 29 year-old Dr Rabea Kashkeri from Saudi Arabia has been given the opportunity to do his Residency in Sweden. Dr Rabea came to Malmoe with his family in January 2012. After a year of preparation, including lessons in Swedish, Swedish Medical Terminology and an introduction to the Swedish healthcare system, he recently began his training in Psychiatry at the University Hospital of Skane, SUS, in Malmoe.
Why did you choose to do your training in Sweden?
– I wanted to study abroad and I had heard a lot of positive things about Sweden. I knew that the training here is of very good quality, as is Swedish healthcare in general. I contacted the consulate of Saudi Arabia in Germany and asked them to see what possibilities there were. The consulate, in their turn, contacted Swedish HealthCare. This was in 2010 and since I didn’t know very much about the country I came to visit. I met with representatives from Swedish HealthCare and visited the hospital for an interview. A year after my first visit all the paperwork was done.
What do you think of the training?
– The training in Sweden is more patient oriented than in Saudi Arabia. This was one of the reasons for me wanting to come here for my training. We spend a lot of time at the clinic. Right now I am at a ward with 16 beds. I work close to my patients and my colleagues. Every Thursday we have a briefing where we talk about our patients, discuss diagnosis and treatment which is very rewarding.
What difficulties have you encountered?
– First of all, the language. As a psychiatrist I talk a lot with my patients, it’s important to be able to communicate well. So far, everyone has been very helpful when I tell them where I am from and why I am here.
– I have heard that other foreign students have had to wait a long time for their social security numbers and that this has caused them trouble. Swedish HealthCare helped me with this during my first days in the country.
What are your impressions of Sweden so far?
– Both me and my wife are very happy here. We rent an apartment not far from the hospital and we have made friends with both neighbours and colleagues. Our daughter is 3 years old and loves it at daycare. She has learnt much more Swedish than I have and has a lot of friends. Overall I think Swedes are very friendly.
What will you do when you get back to Saudi Arabia?
– The Saudi government is paying for my education and in my contract with them it says that I must return after my training to work for a number of years. I hope that my experiences from Sweden will be able to contribute to the development of psychiatric care in Saudi Arabia.