Tehran, Baghdad promoting health diplomacy   

TEHRAN – Health ministers of Iran and Iraq signed a memorandum of understanding in Tehran, promoting health diplomacy by boosting relations in the field of medical education and treatment.

Iranian Health Minister Bahram Einollahi and his Iraqi counterpart Saleh Al-Hasnawi inked the MOU on Saturday.

The Iraqi official called for importing Iranian technology and expertise in medicine.

“We started registering Iranian medicine in 2003. Thousands of Iraqi students are studying in Iran in various fields,” he added.

Einollahi, for his part, said that the fifth joint committee for economic cooperation was held two months ago, with the issue of health as one of the main topics of discussion.

“It was decided that the pharmaceutical and medical equipment companies of the two countries should cooperate more with each other.”

Earlier this month, Einollahi said health diplomacy is one of the areas that are able to deepen relations between countries in the region.

There are many common issues for cooperation in the field of health between countries, he said, adding that the government’s strategy is to strengthen foreign policy, especially with neighboring countries, IRNA reported.

Einollahi said in April that many countries in the region are asking Iran for help with issues related to health.

In May, Iran hosted the 26th G5 High-Level Experts Meeting on Health Cooperation and the 1st Healthcare Leadership and Governance Training Program.

G5 countries (Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, plus the World Health Organization) have taken part in the meeting with the theme of “Joint Work for Solving Joint Health Problems.”

Addressing the opening ceremony, Einollahi referred to the unity and cooperation of the countries in the fields of health, treatment, and medical education as a historical necessity.

Achieving, maintaining, and promoting health is never possible in a regional way and does not happen in an isolated region, but requires the cooperation of countries, especially neighboring countries, he stressed.

“To develop health in the countries of the group of five, we must look at health collectively and think about creating and promoting health in all countries.

Iran initiated the establishment of the G5 in 2005 to promote subregional cooperation in health to provide technical support in improving this collaboration.

In June 2021, Ahmed al-Mandhari, the World Health Organization director for Eastern Mediterranean Region, said the Islamic Republic of Iran is a role model for primary health care.

For the past four decades, its PHC network has aimed to ensure that people have timely access to affordable, accessible, and acceptable essential health services, he explained.



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