Intensive Care Medicine

Not recruiting at this time

The next SSAI-IC training program will be advertised in spring 2021 with application deadline 1. September 2021 and starting in Jan 2022

The SSAI-IC training program two-year cycles are initiated every second year. As for 2020, the running program and further recruitment is put on hold due to the pandemic. During 2021, the remaining courses from 2020 will be completed and the next program will not start until March 2022. It will be advertised in the spring of 2021 with the application deadline 1. September 2021.

The program abandoned yearly recruitment as an adaptation to the lower number of applicants seen in recent years. We probably have reached a saturation since almost 500 participants have entered the program during the past 20 years. Most ICUs in the Nordic Countries now are run by colleagues who have gone through the SSAI-IC program. The introduction of the EDIC I requirement a few years ago may also have contributed. However, this prerequisite has enabled a more rewarding course content with active candidate participation in advanced case presentations, in-depth analyses of clinical trials, discussions with speakers etc.

The overall aim of the program is to strengthen the standards of intensive care within the Nordic countries. The training contains theoretical learning alongside clinical case reviews and critical appraisal of scientific literature on the diverse topics of Intensive Care Medicine. The clinical rotations constitute a vital element in the development of the competency of the individual delegate and serves to harmonize procedures and methods used within the intensive care community. Together, the integrated parts of the program provide a level of education that takes the candidate closer to the European Union requirements for specialists in Intensive Care Medicine. In Scandinavia, this is not included in the ordinary training for specialists in Anesthesia and Intensive Care.

The gain from the program is apparent to the delegate, his/her institution, but ultimately and most importantly it adds to the quality of care and safety for critically ill patient. More specifically, participating in the program will contribute to patient care by importing up-to-date standards of care, best-practice procedures and experience on handling complex interdisciplinary cases.

In addition to the medical content of the program, the networking, presentations and discussions will aid the individual delegates to develop their expertise into role models with capacity for teaching and developing standard operation procedures in their home clinic. The ability to interpret novelty in the literature, marketing information and clinical procedures in other units from a knowledge based critical perspective is vital for motivated use of resources from ethical and economical perspective.

The intensive care unit regularly sending delegates to the program will benefit by their input from different approaches to management and leadership as well as established external contacts for further networking and development. With a high proportion of clinicians being holders of the Scandinavian Diploma of Intensive Care, the SDIC, the quality of care and the professional development within the unit is secured. Rationale and effective intensive care is pivotal for every hospital and beneficial to society.

The steering committee is convinced that the program with its present level of complexity will remain an important key to competence, networks and leadership in the Nordic intensive care community. With the bi-annual recruitment advertised well in advance, motivated applicants are enabled to plan their EDIC 1 exam to enter the program.

Any inquiry in preparation of future applications can be addressed to the respective country representatives of the steering committee.

Course Information (will be updated for the new call in 2021)

The Scandinavian Society of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine (SSAI) co-ordinates an advanced training program in Intensive Care Medicine for doctors working at Scandinavian hospitals.

Requirements for application to the program.

  • The main aim of the program is to prepare future senior intensive care specialists and ICU-directors in Scandinavia for their ever more complicated tasks.
  • All applicants to the training program must have completed part one examination of the European Diploma in Intensive Care Medicine (EDIC Part I) before they can enter the program.
  • EDIC 1 competence is expected to facilitate the focusing on interactive, problem-oriented presentations, hot topics, pro – contra, controversies etc.
  • The amount of “textbook kind of lectures” will be reduced. Basics are expected to be known from textbooks, COBATRICE and EDIC.
  • Academic focus will be enhanced and focused on the needs of Scandinavian intensive care medicine.
  • The training period is 2 years, starting January 2022.

The training program is limited to 30 delegates.

Clinical training

During the two-year period the delegate will be appointed a host clinic and a local tutor. The host clinic will employ the trainee in an appropriate position (i.e. in an intensive care unit) during the training program. A minimum of one year of clinical training should be done at a university intensive care unit.


During the training period SSAI will organize 5 four-day courses. These courses will be located in Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland and held in English. To achieve the goal of creating a close networking atmosphere the participants are expected to participate in the scheduled sessions and social functions at the course sites.

International exchange

The program includes a mandatory period of training in an ICU in another country.

Scientific training

The candidates will also have to complete an “ICU project” during their two-year training. This project could be a research project, quality assurance or development project or a literature review of agreed subject. The topic must be related to intensive care medicine. If the trainee has already an ongoing project it may be included, for example as part of an ongoing or recently passed PhD research program During the two-year training period, it must be expected to spend 6-12 weeks of fulltime work on the project. Please feel free to ask the director of the SSAI-IC training program or your national representatives in the SSAI-IC Steering Committee for advice (see below).


The candidate should use and implement the CoBaTrICE (the competencies) during the training program ( CoBaTrICE is an international Competency Based Training program in Intensive Care Medicine for Europe, which is being implemented in intensive care training programs of most West European countries and now integrated with PACT and EDIC (see below). The delegates are expected to fill out the COBA Log Book (COBATRICE Portfolio) during their two-year training.


The applicants must pass EDIC I to be able to enter the SSAI Training Program in Intensive Care Medicine.

Those who plan to take EDIC 1 in the fall of 2021 can apply to the program by 1st of September 2021 but will be put on waiting list until results of the EDIC 1 exam arrive (1st of Dec).

The delegate must acquire the EDIC part two (EDIC II) to be able to apply for the SSAI-IC Diploma after completing their two-year training.

SSAI Diploma in Intensive Care Medicine

Trainees completing the two-year training program, including all the 5 courses, the ICU project, the ICU exchange program, the EDIC I and II and the COBATRICE Portfolio can apply for the Scandinavian Diploma in Intensive Care Medicine from the SSAI.


All expenses for this program (including travelling, accommodation and a fee for each course) must be be covered by the host clinic. Other arrangement concerning finances must be approved by the SSAI-IC steering group. The course fee does not include travel cost and accommodation that may vary according to early vs late reservations of flights and hotels, time of year, course site etc.

Who can apply to the program?

Young specialists in anaesthesia & intensive care in the Nordic Countries, who have finished their anaesthesia training within the last 5 years are the prime target applicants. Specialists from other disciplines are invited to apply to the program, but they must complete a minimum of 12 consecutive months of anaesthesia training to be eligible. They should apply within 5 years of finishing their training in the primary specialty and within 3 years of completing their anaesthesia training. 

SSAI membership

Membership in SSAI is mandatory and proof of membership has to be attached with the application. If this is not done before deadline of application the application will not be handled.

Selection of applicants

Applicants are selected at the discretion of the steering committee according to quality of the application, the ranked quality of their affiliation, clinical skills, academic merits, proposed ICU rotation, proposed ICU project, proposed training abroad and personal motivation.

Applications should include the following:

  1. The application form.
  2. Letter by the applicant informing about the applicant’s motivation and expectations regarding the program.
  3. Suggested clinical rotation in different ICUs during the two-years training period.
  4. Recommendation letter from a superior documenting the applicant’s interest in and commitment to intensive care medicine.
  5. Curriculum vitae.
  6. ICU project proposal. Suggest a project tutor. Define topic/title and design the project (background info, aim, hypothesis, methods and timetable (250-500 words plus references).
  7. Proof of membership within the SSAI.
  8. Proof of having passed EDIC I.
  9. A recent electronic picture of the applicant.

Further information

For further information see or contact the chairman of the SSAI-IC training program or any of your national representatives in the SSAI-IC Steering Committee:

SSAI-IC Steering Committee

All material submitted as a part of an application must be in electronic format.

Applications with attachments should be sent by e-mail to the program secretary at an address tba before September 1, 2021

Christian Rylander MD, PhD, DEAA, EDIC
Chair, Scandinavian Postgraduate Training Program in Intensive Care Medicine
Associate Professor, Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine
Sahlgrenska University Hospital
413 45 Gothenburg, SWEDEN
Tel +46 31 342 83 32 / +46 736 60 14 75

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