Princess Sofia of Sweden visited Södertälje on Thursday 9 March to mark the official opening of the New Södertälje Hospital, which underwent extensive construction and remodelling.
After making the short trip from central Stockholm, Princess Sofia was received at the hospital – now one of the foremost modern healthcare facilities in Sweden – by president of the hospital, Mikael Runsiö and fiscal County Commissioner Irene Svenonius.
During the inauguration ceremony the crowd heard speeches from Svenonius, healthcare County Council member Anna Starbrink and real estate and investments Count Commissioner Paul Lindqvist before Sofia took the podium.
In her opening speech the princess spoke of the fact that the new hospital is part of a positive trend in the healthcare sector. With Stockholm’s population growing rapidly more people are aging and in need of expert medical care. With access to more information than ever and better digital tools it’s crucial that the health services are part of this development and able to take advantage of it to meet the growing demand.
She said: ‘I hope that these modern facilities will give all of you who work here even better conditions to perform your important task – to provide safe and accessible emergency care to a growing population.’
Following the ceremony the princess was given a tour of the emergency department, maternity ward, operating and radiology rooms. She also helped to unveil the art now installed in the building.
Speaking of the new maternity ward Princess Sofia commented on the fact that ‘we’ve got a variety of people who come here from all different parts of the world’ and the new maternity ward will provide new care routines that will ‘help all women, regardless of background, to feel safe before and during their confinement.’
Of the support for women – both native-born and those who have immigrated – she said the hospital ‘is absolutely stunning. It comes at the right time, that’s the way it should be, all women who will give birth to children should have the same right and where we know that such things as seems quite simple, as the language and to get an understanding, it is extremely important to know a trust and a faith. We also know that it contributes to less damage during childbirth. So I think that’s fantastic. I’m very impressed by New Södertälje Hospital and how they have thought when it comes to [these difficulties].’
The remodel of the New Södertälje Hospital is part of a larger development of the county health care in Stockholm and will create capacity for an increased number of inpatient and emergency visits from residents in the southwest of the county.