Hospital Project in E. Azarbaijan Expedited

Hospital Project in E. Azarbaijan ExpeditedHospital Project in E. Azarbaijan Expedited

The 88-bed hospital in Ajabshir, East Azarbaijan Province, the construction of which began in 2010, is expected to be completed in the next fiscal year (starts March 2018) with an allocation of $26 million.

Mohammad Jaafar Alizadeh, deputy minister of roads and urban development, said completion of the hospital is a top priority.

“The project is half way through and its construction will be expedited with the increase in funding,” he was quoted as saying by

The hospital will have specialized wards including internal, obstetrics and gynecology, neonatal and pediatric, ICU, subspecialty clinics and laboratories.  

According to Seyyed Shamseddin Maraasi, governor of Ajabshir, the only hospital in the city is too small to admit the large number of patients. The new hospital is bigger and will be better-equipped.

It is seven years since its launching, but the project failed to make progress due to lack of funds, the official rued. The four-storey medical facility is coming up in an area of over 15,000 square meters adjacent to the existing hospital.

The city of Ajabshir, along with Azarshahr, was the worst hit in the recent flash floods in East and West Azarbaijan as well as Kurdistan, Mazandaran, and Zanjan provinces that took the lives of 46 people and inflicted massive damage to infrastructure.   

With a population of 85,000, Ajabshir County is located southwest of the provincial capital Tabriz.

With special focus on the development of health infrastructure, the government has set aside 6 trillion rials ($157 million) this year (started March 21) for the completion of hospitals that are currently under construction. The funds have been allocated from the 1% earmarked for hospitals from the value added tax. VAT accounts for 48% of the government’s total tax revenues.

“The additional funds for Ajabshir hospital marks an increase of one trillion rials ($26 million) over last year’s budget,” said Alizadeh.

With additional financial resources, the progress of the health facility is expected to be speeded up this year, he added.

Last year, 25 hospitals with around 2,000 beds were completed with five trillion rials ($131 million) in various provinces. Ten more hospitals are expected to open  by the end of the present government’s tenure in mid-summer.  

There are 120,000 hospital beds in the country.

With the population close to 80 million, the number of hospital beds is 1.5 per 1000 people, according to World Bank and Health Ministry data, which is inadequate. The figure is 13.5 in Japan, 10.5 in South Korea, 7.5 in European countries and 2.7 in Turkey.

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