Education and teaching at Global Disaster Medicine - Health Needs and Response

At Global Disaster Medicine - Health Needs and Response we have extensive experience of teaching and lecturing in disaster medicine, public health in disasters, global health in relation to disasters, prioritisation, triage and decision-making. Our staff draw extensively on their research and their experience of field work in disasters in their teaching and training. We teach a variety of courses in disaster medicine, including professional training and an Erasmus Mundus Master programme.

AnTriEx and ViTriEX - simulation tools for teaching and training

people crouching down sorting red flat plates that symbolise patients
Students during an AnTriEx exercise Photo: Åsa Svensson

Disaster medicine courses for medical students at KI

We teach short courses in disaster medicine for specialist doctors and medical students at KI, in the form of an elective course called Katastrofmedicin SVK. The content of the courses includes principles of clinical care, decision making with limited resources, and context in disasters. The course also gives students an overview of the direct and indirect effects of a disaster on health and health care systems.

During the spring and autumn semester we also arrange a special one-day course in disaster medicine for all final year medical students at KI, called Decision-making with limited resources. The focus of this one-day course is on triage, prioritisation and how to best make decisions when not all, or even most, of the facts in a case or event are known. 

Courses for specialist medical staff

Since 2018 we have conducted specialist courses on behalf of the Swedish National Board of Health and Welface (Socialstyrelsen), also known as SK-courses. The specialist courses are state-funded courses for medical doctors who are doing their specialised medical training in Sweden (specialiseringstjänstgöring). The courses are focused on decision-making with limited resources, triage, and disaster medicine.

Two students, a man and a woman, sit with their backs against the camera, looking at a white board that their teacher is pointing at
Erasmus Mundus Master Public Health in Disasters Photo: Åsa Svensson

Erasmus Mundus Master Programme - Public Health in Disasters

Our Erasmus Mundus Master programme in Public Health in Disasters focuses on high quality education and training in the field of public health in disaster situations. It is the only Erasmus Mundus Master programme at Karolinska Institutet.

About the programme

We are one of three partners in a joint Erasmus Mundus Master degree programme, along with the Universidad de Oviedo in Spain and the University of Nicosia in Cyprus. The Master programme intends to build capacity that will reduce disaster risks and contribute to a better and more targeted public health-based relief following disasters. The programme is taught by top-level professional with personal experience of working in health care in disaster situations. The aim of the programme is to give the students plenty of both practical and theoretical training in health care in disasters and global medicine, in order to prepare them for a wide number of professional opportunities.

Health Assistance in Humanitarian Crisis - Professional training course in collaboration Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Sweden

We teach a professional education course (uppdragsutbildning) called Health Assistance in Humanitarian Crisis, aimed at health care and medical staff who are preparing to do a field mission abroad with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Sweden.

About the course

The course awards 20 ECTs and is taught full-time, on campus at KI Campus Solna.The course provides concrete tools for planning and implementing humanitarian health assistance. The basis of the course is the global health situation and determinants for health. It illustrates how context and different types of disasters affect public health. The course highlights health strategies aimed at reducing morbidity and mortality. The course is taught through a combination of web-based learning and teaching on campus at KI in Solna. It is an advanced level course and you must be a registered health care professional or have otherwise relevant experience as a health care worker in order to be eligible to apply. At the end of the course a written, individual exam is conducted. 

Core subjects the course focuses on:

  • Global health, including the global health situation and health determinants
  • Global health and disaster response
  • Humanitarian principles and organisation
  • Communicable diseases, epidemic outbreaks
  • Maternal and child health
  • Non communicable diseases
  • Mental health in disasters
  • Moral and ethical dilemmas in humanitarian work

Teaching methods

  • Interactive lectures
  • Discussion seminars
  • Case-based group assignments
  • Clinical simulation exercises

Course start and application

Please note that you are only able to attend the course if you have been offered a position with Médecins Sans Frontières (Läkare utan Gränser) Sweden or if your employer is in other ways behind your participation. It is not possible to apply to or take part in the course on your own. 

For more information about course content, please contact Anneli Eriksson,

If you are going to take the course via Médecins Sans Frontières, please contact Tove Eriksson, to apply. 

If you are interested in applying to this course but are not a staff member of Médecins Sans Frontières please contact Kristoffer Mörtsjö, for more information about the registration process and fee.

Public Health Response in Disasters - Freestanding course

The aim of the course is to provide competencies to adequately prioritise, plan, implement and monitor public health interventions in disaster relief, based on needs and risks. The course intends to prepare students for a many different professional roles within the field of global health and disaster medicine. It is taught alongside our Erasmus Mundus Master programme, which gives students the added benefit of collaborating with peers from all over the world and exchange knowledge and experiences in a stimulating environment.


For questions regarding our courses, please contact:

Profile image

Hannah von Reding

Course coordinator
Content reviewer:
Åsa Svensson