Iran Health Ministry Signs €1.8b Deal with UK’s IHG
The project will be one of the biggest in Iran’s health sector,
using foreign financial resources and creating thousands of direct
and indirect jobs.
Iran’s Ministry of Health signed an investment and cooperation memorandum of
understanding with UK’s International Hospitals Group in the Iranian Embassy
in London (Oct. 23). Based on the deal, IHG will invest an estimated €1.8
billion in the construction of a network of modern cancer treatment centers
in Tehran and other provinces.
“Apart from attracting financial resources to build, equip and run these
centers, the British side will cooperate in transferring the latest medical
know-how regarding cancer treatment and training of personnel,” Iranian
Ambassador to the UK Hamid Baeidinejad reported in his official Instagram
When completed, the project will be one of the biggest in Iran’s health
sector, using foreign financial resources and creating thousands of direct
and indirect jobs.
International Hospitals Group is an international healthcare services
company headquartered in Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire. IHG’s services
include healthcare consultancy, design, construction, medical equipping and
operation and management of healthcare facilities.
The MoU was signed after several months of negotiations on technical aspects
of the project. The British company is funding the construction of a network
of advanced cancer treatment centers in Iran, including Tehran and other
cities, all equipped with the latest cancer treatment equipment and
protocols which can communicate and coordinate in the form of a network. If
necessary, patients will be initially diagnosed and then referred to the
relevant centers depending on their need.
Iraj Harirchi, a spokesman for the Ministry of Health, said that in the
healthcare sector the country was in need of attracting nongovernmental
capital, adding that attracting foreign investors was one option. He said
that before striking the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) and due
to the sanctions there was no possibility of negotiations in such areas, but
all foreign investments were made possible after JCPOA was signed. “We need
to make investment in various areas, and cancer treatment is one of them.”
He said that the ministry had already signed contracts with foreign
countries, adding: “This is not something new. Considering the credit
restrictions for investment inside Iran, as in other sectors, one of our
priorities is attracting foreign investment. Previously, we have also signed
healthcare contracts with countries such as Germany, Italy, Austria, Turkey
and South Korea.”
According to first deputy health minister Iran is currently facing a
shortage of 40,000 hospital beds, and after the implementation of the
‘health scheme’, more than 24,000 beds were added to the treatment centers;
however, there is still a shortage in this area and we have signed deals
with foreign investors to receive 10,000 new hospital beds.”
The signing of the MoU on cancer treatment and construction of new medical
centers related to this disease is important because, according to Health
Ministry officials, outbreak of various cancers in Iran is on the rise and
is expected to become the second cause of death in the country in the
future. According to the latest figures released in Iran, excluding skin
cancers, there are 92,000 new cases of cancer annually. If we add up the
skin cancers, the figure will rise to more than one hundred thousand.
Breast, stomach, intestine and bladder cancers can be considered the most
common cancers in the country, regardless of the gender. The ratio of men
with cancer in Iran is 134 per 100,000 and of women is 128.