Iran’s special envoy to Afghanistan has inaugurated a diabetes center funded by the Islamic Republic in the eastern province of Nangarhar.
Hospitals across Afghanistan are facing a growing crisis. The poor economy has also generated a wide array of health problems, not least chronic cases of malnutrition.
Iran’s diplomatic mission in Kabul announced in a post published on Twitter on Thursday that the ‘Khatam-ul-Anbiya’ diabetes diagnosis center was opened by Hassan Kazemi-Qomi, in the presence of Taliban officials.
The medical center was renovated and equipped through the efforts of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and handed over to local authorities in Nangarhar province..
در چارچوب تقویت همکاری های پزشکی بین ایران و افغانستان، امروز مرکز تشخیص دیابت خاتم الانبیاء افغانستان در ننگرهار توسط آقای کاظمی قمی و مقامات ذیربط افغانستان افتتاح گردید. این مرکز با تلاشهای ج.ا.ایران بازسازی، تجهیز و تحویل گردید. pic.twitter.com/waDynIjyEN— Embassy of the I.R. Iran in Kabul, Afghanistan (@IRANinKabul) June 21, 2023
The diplomatic mission said the center was built within the framework of medical cooperation between Iran and Afghanistan.
The Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) Dari radio station reported the center can render services to 60 diabetic patients on a daily basis.
“The inauguration of the center marks opening the path for other forms of assistance from the Islamic Republic of Iran to the health sector in the eastern part of Afghanistan, especially Nangarhar province,” Kazemi-Qomi said.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran will continue to assist the center until it develops the capacity to operate independently.”
For his part, the deputy minister of public health in the Taliban government appreciated Iran's contributions to Afghanistan’s health sector, calling for the construction of similar centers in other provinces.
Mohammad Hassan Ghiyathi said 12 doctors and health workers, including four women, are working in the Khatam-ul-Anbiya center who have been trained in Iran.
Afghanistan’s healthcare system is at risk of collapse, after international donors including the World Bank and European Union stopped providing aid following the Taliban takeover in August 2021.
Health workers, both public and private, who remain in Afghanistan are battling a humanitarian crisis of staggering proportions, with dwindling personnel and resources.
The suspension in financial aid has crippled the ‘Sehatmandi Project,’ a multi-donor health program administered by the World Bank and implemented by the Afghan Ministry of Public Health that constitutes the backbone of Afghanistan’s health system.
Out of a total of 2,309 facilities, 393 remain fully operational.
According to data provided by the World Health Organization (WHO), about two-thirds of the 2,309 facilities in the project have reported stock-outs of essential medicines.