Letters The woman question

Sweden is a good model

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39549.487465.3A (Published 17 April 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:848
  1. Rosalind M Duhs, senior teaching fellow
  1. 1Centre for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching, University College London, London WC1E 7HB
  1. r.duhs{at}ucl.ac.uk

Since my return to England after 10 years in Stockholm, I have been disappointed that progress has been comparatively slow in supporting women in their careers in the UK.1 The resultant loss of talent is regrettable. There are many women who are unable to work as much as they would like.

Sweden is a good model, as a culture of men also being responsible for looking after their children is emerging there. This has been gradually built up through the provision of excellent affordable child care and an expectation that women with young children will continue with their careers and work flexibly. The result is the highest birth rate in western Europe, tempering the ageing of the population.

Despite (or perhaps partly because of) this flexibility, healthcare provision in Sweden is of an extremely high standard.


  • Competing interests: None declared.


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