Independent Emergency Services Organization Proposed

Independent Emergency  Services Organization ProposedIndependent Emergency  Services Organization Proposed

The proposal to launch an independent Emergency Services Organization is under consideration by the Supreme Council of Health, said Hassan Hashemi, minister of health and medical education.

Establishment of an autonomous organization to oversee emergency measures, including employment of medical staff, services and salaries, is necessary, he said. The proposal was approved at a meeting with head of the Management and Planning Organization, Mohammad Bagher Nobakht and will come into force after ratification by the council.

Hospital and pre-hospital emergency services have made significant progress in the past decade, especially in offering timely aid to accident victims. With the allocation of 10% of the third party auto insurance to accident victims, it has become mandatory for all hospitals to provide emergency services free of charge, he said, reports IRNA.

Pointing to the need to enhance aerial emergency services, he said 40 helicopters will likely be added to the air ambulance fleet in five years. “Reinforcing air ambulance services is more cost-effective than setting up emergency centers in rural areas.”

Criticizing the domestic car industry, he said despite 36 years of experience, “we still have a long way to go to reach international standards in vehicle production. No matter how many hospitals we build, with substandard cars on the roads and the rising rate of accidents and fatalities, our efforts in the health sector are routinely undermined. The value of human life should be taken into account while constructing roads and manufacturing cars,” he added.

On the rising rate of cardiovascular deaths in the country, he said this is due to the lack of attention to healthy food distribution. “The supply of noxious palm oil is an example and belated action by the authorities in banning it created health risks exerting pressure on hospitals and emergency room staff.”


Hashemi referred to inadequate hospital facilities and worn out equipment at health centers, noting that half of them date back to 60 years ago. “In addition, we have a shortage of hospitals in Tehran, especially in the eastern part where despite millions of residents, there is only one major hospital, Imam Hossein Hospital, which is 40 years old.

“Although national economic growth is achieved through development of the industrial and construction sector, however a country with a healthy population is far more successful.”

Health and economic growth are linked and poor health reduces economic productivity, increases social costs and affects quality of life.

Adequate investment in the health sector is a pre-requisite of economic success. Greater investment is necessary as Iran’s share of GDP in healthcare is far lower than in other Middle Eastern countries, he added.