Anna-Theresia Ekman

Anna-Theresia Ekman

Phd Student
Visiting address: Tomtebodavägen 18A, 17177 Stockholm
Postal address: K9 Global folkhälsa, K9 GPH Alfvén, 171 77 Stockholm

About me

  • My PhD project aims to improve our understanding of the situation of children with developmental disabilities in low-income countries. The first part of the project involves estimating the prevalence of disabilities in children under five years of age, especially in sub-Saharan countries where children are most at risk of disability and developmental delay. The second part deals with how early screening similar to Swedish BVC checks can be integrated into preventive child health care, to enable support for children and families. Through increased knowledge, we can design inclusive policies and targeted early interventions for children and families. The projects are carried out in collaboration with partners in Sierra Leone and Uganda.

    I am active in teaching and was in 2022 and 2023 assistant course leader for the university's SK course in global health for residents. I have also participated as a lecturer and seminar leader in the education of medical students.

    Research results need to be communicated to society to benefit citizens. I therefore have a great interest in the university's third task. Since 2021 I am chair of the Swedish Medical Society's Committee for Global Health, which works to stimulate the subject of global health and sustainable development in schools, higher education and research in the work for fair and equal health.


  • Children living with disabilities in low-income countries risk being excluded from school and society. Ongoing development efforts also fail to include children with disabilities. This is even though cost-effective interventions can in many cases reduce the risk of these children being excluded from society.

    My research therefore focuses on disabilities in children and adolescents, with a particular focus on neurodevelopmental conditions such as autism, ADHD and intellectual disability. Our group investigates how regularly conducted surveys can be used to better understand the life situation of children living with disabilities.

    For individual children and their families, early diagnosis and adequate support is crucial and has a positive impact on their ability to develop, participate and contribute to society throughout their lives. However, support systems for children and families living with disabilities are still weak, especially in under-resourced areas. Our research team is therefore exploring how early screening can be included in preventive child health systems.


  • I have taught in the medical program on the course Health in society and environment and the elective course in global health. I have also taught the SK course in global health for residents.



  • Phd Student, Department of Global Public Health, Karolinska Institutet, 2023-2026

Degrees and Education

  • Degree Of Master Of Science In Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 2018

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