With deep sorrow we have to announce that our esteemed colleague and friend Anna Björk Magnusdottir, passed away March 21th 2011, in Reykyavik, Island.
Anna Björk Magnusdottir achieved her professional training in Oto-rhino-laryngology, (diseases of Ear-nose- and throat) in ENT clinics, Hospital of Helsingborg, University Hospital of Malmö and University Hospital of Lund, Sweden.
During ENT-training in Lund she spent some time in the department of Phoniatrics dealing with disorders of voice, speech, and language and swallowing. Phoniatrics, linking humanistic and medical sciences, attracted Anna Björk and 2002 she became a specialist also in phoniatrics. Very soon she achieved high competence in all areas of phoniatrics. Her expert judgment and manual proficiency made her particularly fitted for voice improving surgery (phonosurgery) and phononeurology.
After return to Island and to the ENT clinic at the University hospital in Reykjavik she developed her phoniatric profile as the very first specialist in phoniatrics in Island. Thanks to Anna Björk Magnusdottir the phoniatrics is now recognized as a medical specialty also in her home country.
Open minded and socially talented, she established an impressive network of professional contacts.
Anna Björk was an active member of Swedish Phoniatric Society (Svensk Foniatrisk Förening, SFF). She was also internationally estimated and elected as a member of the board of the Union of European Phoniatricians (UEP) and was involved in creating of the Nordic Ergonomic Voice Group.
Striving to improve her specialist knowledge she attended at several international scientific phoniatric meetings and organized Scandinavian phoniatric conferences in Island, including an Annual SFF meeting in January 2009.
During the last three years Anna Björk was the co-organizer of the coming XXVI Congress of UEP which took place in Lund, Sweden in May 2011. In spite of the progress of her disease she worked for the congress with encouraging enthusiasm.
Anna Björk was an extremely competent phoniatrician and phonosurgeon, continuously updating her vast scientific and clinical knowledge. She was engaged, full of empathy, compassion, patience and kindness towards her patients. In her clinical work she was very competent, creative and never hesitating to find alternative ways for saving health and lives of her patients.
She was also a loyal co-worker, respected and admired by colleagues and stuff, being a personal friend with several co-workers in the ENT clinic and Phoniatric department in Lund with which she kept close contact also after her definite return to Island.
Phoniatricians worldwide, particularly in Sweden and in Lund, unite today in a deep sorrow after loosing Anna Björk Magnusdottir, highly estimated fellow and friend.
Lucyna Schalén MD PhD Ass Prof
Former President of the Union of European Phoniatricians
University Hospital of Lund
Gunnar Björck MD
President of Swedish Phoniatric Society
Karolinska University Hospital
Roland Rydell MD PhD Ass Prof
Senior consultant in phoniatrics
University Hospital of Lund