Abandoned Health Projects Will Be Completed

Since the 2014 health reforms, more than 2,700 medical centers were established across the country at a cost of $195 million while $183 million was spent on reconstruction and renovation of 12,780 existing health facilities
In the past 20 days, 10 hospitals and specialized clinics were inaugurated across the country.In the past 20 days, 10 hospitals and specialized clinics were inaugurated across the country.

The government has taken up the task of completing a number of hospital projects that were started during the former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s two tenures but remained in various stages of construction at the end of his term.

Several projects have been completed in the last three years after President Hassan Rouhani took office in 2013, IRNA reported.  

Last week, a 610-bed state-run educational hospital opened in Mashhad, capital of the northeastern Khorasan Razavi Province in the presence of the president and his health minister, Hassan Qazizadeh Hashemi.

At the opening ceremony of the Imam Reza Hospital, Rouhani said, “We should ensure that all the people have easy access to comprehensive, quality healthcare services close to their place of stay.”

Around $59.2 million (2,250 billion rials) was allocated for the hospital construction and it created 3,000 jobs in various sectors. The project started in 2008, and had progressed only 40% till the end of the previous administration’s tenure. This was one of the many unfinished projects undertaken and completed by the Health Ministry since 2013.

The hospital has wards for emergency services, internal medicine, general surgeries, intensive care unit (ICU), coronary care unit (CCU), neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), burns center, urology, dermatology and gynecology. MRI, radiology, nuclear medicine, cardiac catheterization and open heart surgery facilities are also available.

“In the past 20 days, 10 other hospitals and specialized clinics were inaugurated across the country,” said Hashemi.

They include a 324-bed hospital in Yazd, capital of Yazd Province, a 130-bed hospital in Pakdasht city 25 km southeast of Tehran, a 286-bed hospital in Birjand city in South Khorsasan Province, a 400-bed hospital in Ahvaz in Khuzestan Province, a specialized clinic with 23 wards in Ilam, and a 540-bed hospital and specialized educational clinic in Sanandaj and a 32-bed hospital in Dehgolan, both located in Kurdistan Province.

Two specialized clinics opened in Garmsar and Mahdishahr in Semnan Province.

On February 21, more than 650 small health centers (providing basic health services), were inaugurated simultaneously by 47 universities of medical sciences in 28 provinces through a video conference in the presence of the minister at a health center in the northern Mazandaran Province.

Hashemi said more projects will open in various provinces including Khorasan Razavi by the end of the current fiscal year on March 20.

“About 36% (more than 1 million people) from Mashhad’s total population of 3 million live in informal settlements. In the past they were deprived of even basic healthcare services; however at present there is one physician for every 3,000 people living in fringe areas of the city.”

  Healthcare Costs Less

The Health Reform Plan has reduced healthcare costs since its implementation in 2014. Investment in medical equipment and the increase in the number of hospital beds are a major achievement of the health sector.

Since the reforms, more than 2,700 health centers were established across the country at a cost of $195 million (7,800 billion rials). Around $183 million (7,350 billion rials) was expended by the ministry on reconstruction and renovation of 12,780 existing health centers.

An additional 6,200 health centers in towns with a population of less than 20,000 people will be established in the near future.

Earlier, a MoU was signed by Hashemi and Abbas Akhoundi, the minister of roads and urban development, to expand the number of health centers in urban and rural areas so as to cover more people living in outlying areas of cities and towns.

In efforts to curb critical shortage in the health workforce in deprived areas, last November the ministry dispensed 2,000 specialists in different fields to 850 state-run hospitals in 378 cities.

An estimated 1,600 more specialists are expected to start work in the unprivileged areas soon to augment and improve access to healthcare services.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints