Bergen Centre for Ethics and Priority Setting in Health (BCEPS)

Sara Soraya Eriksen

Sara Soraya Eriksen is a medical student following the PhD/research track program. Her research focuses on the importance of trust in global healthcare. She is expected to finish her cand.med in 2022.

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Link to BCEPS  

An interest for global health was a big motivation for applying to medical school. Voluntary work for Medical Students Humanitarian Campaign really sparked my motivation and pushed me to look for further opportunities to learn. I decided to apply for the research track program after meeting with Prof. Ole Frithjof Norheim, a professor who has been an inspiration to me since my first year of medical school.

My experience with the programme 

The research track programme is a unique chance to gain insight into the daily life of a researcher while studying for medical school. The programme provides curious medical students with the opportunity to finish medical school and to get a head start on PhD studies, all within 7 years. It involves one year with full time research following two years with part time research parallel to medical school.

I feel grateful for the opportunity to learn and conduct research, but also to grow as a human being within the BCEPS community.

BCEPS is not only a hub of highly skilled scientists, but also a place where students are encouraged, motivated and supported in a way that I believe must be at top notch level. Being affiliated to BCEPS has provided me with the opportunity to experience field trips to Ethiopia and following courses at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, which has broadened my understanding of the international relevance of health care. The colleagues and co-students are extremely friendly and inspiring to be around, and I find the unofficial discussions in the hallway of “Overlege Danielsens Hus” as valuable as the scientific programme.   

My research field  

My project: “Trust–an essential foundation for healthcare” is a study exploring trust among mothers giving birth in Ethiopia. It highlights the importance of social relations within the field of health care, something I believe is an undercommunicated necessity for healthcare systems to reach their full potential, both in terms of quality and access. In my opinion, social aspects of health care deserve greater research attention and I hope my research can be a small but valuable contribution to it.   

Future plans  

I dream of a fair and green world in which everyone has sufficient access to health care. I graduate from Medical School December 2022, and intend to pursue doctoral level studies afterwards.