WHO, Oslo University Hospital Support Enhanced Poison Treatment in Iran

WHO, Oslo University Hospital Support Enhanced Poison Treatment in Iran

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with Oslo University Hospital, has facilitated a critical initiative to enhance poison treatment methods in Iran.

This strategic partnership seeks to bolster global expertise while fostering international academic collaboration by providing breathing machines and vital medication to Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences (SBUMS) for addressing methanol, carbon monoxide (CO), and anesthetic gas poisoning cases.

Oslo University Hospital’s joint effort with SBUMS signifies a pivotal advancement in elevating humanitarian services within the Islamic Republic of Iran, addressing a significant healthcare requirement in the region by enhancing the country’s capabilities in clinical trials, particularly for methanol and CO poisoning treatment.

The successful endeavor involved a comprehensive coordination among multiple sectors, including healthcare, academia, the Ministry of Health and Medical Education (MOHME), and various levels of WHO – HQ, Eastern Mediterranean Region, and Iran country office. The collaboration was comprehensive, addressing legal, technical, and logistics aspects.

A formal handover of breathing machines and methanol antidotes took place at a ceremony held on Monday, 20 November 2023, at SBUMS, attended by esteemed dignitaries, including SBUMS officials, the Ambassador of Norway in Iran, representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, MOHME, WHO, and the United Nations resident coordinator. Oslo University Hospital partners joined the event virtually via recorded video.

During the ceremony, Dr Syed Jaffar Hussain, WHO Representative and Head of Mission in Iran, highlighted the significance of international collaborations amidst sanctions, emphasizing their role in knowledge transfer among nations and academic institutions. WHO pledged support through nationwide training courses on the usage of donated breathing machines and technical assistance for project execution. “We are also planning to upscale this initiative to Regional level for future collaborations,” added Dr Hussain.

Sigvald Tomin Hauge, the Norwegian Ambassador, emphasized Norway's commitment to humanitarian aid in Iran and the region's future plans, supporting WHO's proposed initiatives.

Dr. Alireza Zali, SBUMS Chancellor, expressed gratitude for Norway's and Oslo University Hospital's support, emphasizing the positive impact on Iran's research and clinical institutes, particularly the crucial role in maintaining sufficient antidote supplies in poison centers. This donation not only enhances clinical studies on poisoned patients but also provides an opportunity for MOHME to strengthen national poison centers and networks.

In a video message, Dr Knut Erik Hovda, representing Oslo University Hospital, commended the close collaboration with WHO at all levels. He acknowledged the commitment of technical and academic institutes in Iran, expressing hope that this donation would contribute to improved treatment for poisoning with methanol, CO and anaesthetic gases.

This collaborative initiative showcases the potency of international cooperation in addressing pressing healthcare challenges, ultimately fortifying healthcare systems and saving lives worldwide.

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