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Karolinska's Annual Report 2023 sums up another strong year for the hospital

More patients cared for, high quality and satisfied patients. Karolinska University Hospital can sum up a strong 2023.
Björn Zoëga, CEO at Karolinska University Hospital.

The increase in the number of patients treated at Karolinska University Hospital continues. A total of 334,486 patients received care at the hospital in 2023, an increase of 3 percent compared to the previous year. In 2023, the hospital delivered 6.5 percent more care to Region Stockholm, compared to the region's order.

Increased patient involvement

Patient-reported outcome measures, PROMs, are used in most clinics, and are a way to take advantage of the patient's experience of results and function after treatment or surgery. PROMs are an important part of Karolinska University Hospital's improvement efforts and contribute to raising the quality of care and treatment. Further, through automated mailing of patient questionnaires, PREM, after outpatient visits, day surgery or inpatient stays, the patient can have their say on treatment, information and participation. In 94 per cent of 108,831 responses in 2023, Karolinska was rated "good" or "very good".


The rapid emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) presents both opportunities and challenges for healthcare. To ensure responsible use of artificial intelligence (AI), Karolinska is taking an active role in development in collaboration with academia and industry. Some examples of how AI is used at Karolinska are:

  • to detect lung cancer
  • in radiation therapy of cancer
  • in case of early signs of dementia
  • to detect atrial fibrillation
  • for precision diagnostics in MS
  • to detect violence against children

Research, education and innovation

Karolinska University Hospital delivers university healthcare, which means that care, research, and education are a tripartite core mission. Some numbers from 2023:

Research and innovation:

  • 2,494 active researchers
  • 1.8 degree of citation
  • SEK 2.32 billion in external research grants in collaboration with KI
  • 1,612 ongoing/planned clinical studies


  • 38,248 student weeks at the hospital
  • >700 employees in Region Stockholm have been trained and received Good Clinical Practice certificates
  • 47 research nurses have been trained at the hospital

Stable economy

As a result of Karolinska's implemented actions – decentralization of decisions and responsibility, streamlining administration and improved cooperation between the various parts of the hospital – the economy stabilized, and as of July, Karolinska has followed its financial plan for the year.

"Inflation hit with full force, but we handled it in a strong way. Our measures are having an impact, which is mainly due to the fantastic job our staff does, and the constant focus on the needs of our patients," says Björn Zoëga, CEO at Karolinska University Hospital.

Best hospital in Europe

Karolinska's ambitious development agenda and solid achievements have attracted international attention also in 2023. In the only global ranking of hospitals conducted, by Newsweek magazine, the hospital places in the top 10 for the fourth year in a row. This year, the hospital is ranked sixth in the world and the best hospital in Europe.

"This is a great recognition for Karolinska's staff and for Swedish healthcare, not least as the number of countries and hospitals in the ranking has increased," says Björn Zoëga.

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