Photo: Stefan Tell

Henry Ascher

Born 1953 in Gothenburg. Chief and associate professor of paediatrics, chair of the Swedish Paediatric Society’s working group on child refugees.

Henry Ascher is also a professor at the Nordic School of Public Health specializing in refugees, migration and health. He is one of the founders of Rosengrenska, the Swedish Red Cross service providing access to medical care for undocumented refugees, and he has been recognized for his work with apathetic refugee children. He is now engaged in research about and with undocumented children, examining their strategies for day-to-day living under extreme pressure. He is currently working at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, part of the University of Gothenburg, and with the child refugee team at Angered Community Hospital.

Henry Ascher is the co-author of numerous books and articles on the subject of child health and human rights. He was earlier member of the board of the Swedish Equality Ombudsman.

He was on the staff of the Queen Silvia Children’s Hospital in Gothenburg for 20 years, where he specialized in treating children with gastrointestinal and liver conditions. He also tutored medical students on children’s rights and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and was instrumental in setting up the Centre for Children’s Right to Health, which aims to make children’s rights a central consideration in the hospital’s day-to-day activities.

In 2005 he was awarded the Claes Carlsten Fellowship “for his committed work, over many years, with the health of vulnerable children, young adults and families, including care of undocumented refugee children and their families, promotion of children’s rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child to be heard and to have a say in their care, and efforts to disseminate knowledge and influence opinion in order to increase understanding of the situation faced by these groups.”

In 2008 he received the Solstickan Award “for his work to ensure that all children permanently or temporarily resident in Sweden are cared for in accordance with their rights under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.”

Henry Ascher is an arts lover with a passionate interest in children’s culture. At one time he wanted to be an actor – an ambition inherited by his daughter.

Interview with Henry Ascher, here.