SEMEY – An emergency hospital with the capacity to treat 325 patients officially opened in Semey at the end of December in a ceremony attended by East Kazakhstan Oblast Akim (Governor) Berdybek Saparbayev and Vice Minister of Healthcare Eric Bayzhunussov.
The new medical facility was built through the 100 Schools, 100 Hospitals programme. It was designed to care for 325 patients and its clinic to handle 500 visits per day. The hospital and clinic cost 10.8 billion tenge (US$69.9 million) to build and the equipment installed cost over 2.8 billion tenge (US$18.1 million).
“Despite the global crisis, over the past 10 years, Kazakhstan has built more than 500 health facilities. Fifteen years ago we could only dream about this. The new building is equipped with new technologies, CT scans and other modern medical devices,” Bayzhunussov said at the ceremony.
The vice minister also noted that the Semey region is one of the most promising for healthcare due to its developing nuclear medicine and oncology services. During the Soviet times, the region hosted the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site, and while this created huge problems in terms of higher cancer rates, the former test site is now used as a centre of peaceful nuclear research.
The region built 13 major medical facilities and 11 rural health stations in 2013 in an effort to provide oncology services and reduce cardiovascular morbidity and maternal and infant mortality. A children’s tuberculosis hospital funded by Saudi Arabia (at a cost of 1.3 billion tenge; US$8.4 million) is nearing completion. Saparbayev said that a medical services centre worth about 13 billion tenge (US$84.2 million) will be commissioned soon.
A family outpatient clinic opened in Prirechnoe village on the same day the emergency hospital opened. It will take patients from the local village as well as the nearby Muzdybay and Zharkyn settlements. Through the Salamatty Kazakhstan (Healthy Kazakhstan) programme, 74 million tenge (US$479,057) was allocated to build the new clinic this year. Today, 16 specialists are working there, including doctors and nurses.