Hospital Releases Arabic, Somalian Video For New Mothers After Surge In Migrant Births

A woman carries a baby as migrants and refugees wait to board a bus after crossing the Macedonian-Serbian border near the village of Miratovac, Presevo, Serbia on October 24, 2015. Tens of thousands -- many fleeing violence in Syria, Africa and Afghanistan -- have been making their way from Turkey …

The Swedish medical research university-hospital Karolinska has created a video to educate new and expecting mothers but has had to make versions in Arabic and Somalian as midwives say there has been a sharp rise in births to mothers who do not speak Swedish.

The informational video is presented as a guide for new mothers regarding what they can expect immediately after giving birth to their new child. The university-hospital claims there is a great need to offer the information in multiple languages due to the rise births to women of foreign backgrounds and say they often are unable to find translators Sveriges Radio reports.

“We are providing this material in order to better communicate information to families who speak different languages and come from different cultures,” said midwife Josefin Boijsen who is working on the project.

“Everyone is entitled to receive as much information no matter what language you speak or if you can not read,” she said and added, “We can help interpreters, but it is often for a very limited time and information must be communicated throughout all hours of the day so it is a big drawback.”

Another midwife working on the project, Birgitta Berglund, said the need for interpreters in maternity wards has surged in recent years and the demand often outstrips the number of available translators.

“Many times we get a telephone interpreter, that’s the only possibility and it’s not always as good. Sometimes you want a female interpreter,” she said.

In some areas of Sweden, like the southern city of Malmo, the population growth is almost entirely driven by mass migration.

A study from 2014 shows that immigrants to Sweden from poorer countries like Somalia tend to have much higher birth rates than average Swedes while immigrants from European countries have similar rates to Swedes.

Mass migration has meant that Sweden’s population growth has jumped to the second highest in Europe according to EU statistics agency Eurostat. The resulting growth will mean that the Swedish population is set to increase from ten to eleven million people in less than a decade.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at) 


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