May 12, 2015
On May 12, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a grant agreement (G/A) with the Government of Mongolia to provide grant aid of up to 7.985 billion yen for the Project for Construction of Mongolia-Japan Teaching Hospital.
The project will construct a teaching hospital affiliated with the Mongolian National University of Medical Sciences, which is located in the capital of Ulaanbaatar, with the aim of improving post-graduate training for health care professionals and the quality of medical services. The teaching hospital will be the first in Mongolia associated with a university.
As exemplified by the drops in the infant mortality rate from 76 per 1,000 in 1990 to 31 and the maternal mortality rate from 120 per 100,000 to 63 (2011, UNICEF), the fundamental health indices have improved for Mongolia overall; however, large regional disparities remain, and improving health care services, particularly in outlying provinces, is a priority for the health sector. The Government of Mongolia has responded with measures such as promoting the placement of medical personnel in outlying provinces under the Health Sector Human Resource Development Policy for 2010-2014, and posting newly licensed physicians to outlying medical facilities for a total of two years, but the low level of medical skills due to a lack of practical clinical training has become an issue. Although practical clinical training is provided at medical facilities that are based in Ulaanbaatar after the provincial placement, there is no core teaching hospital, unified education program or other post-graduate training program for physicians.
Meanwhile, Ulaanbaatar is experiencing an enormous population influx, such that 1.5 million people, or about half of the country’s total population (2015, national survey committee), are concentrated there, leading to a rising need for hospitals in areas with a large poor population outside the city center. As there is no system for referring patients to appropriate medical facilities, even patients with minor issues are concentrated in core medical facilities in Ulaanbaatar.
Given these circumstances, this project will provide medical services, such as for non-infectious diseases, build a high-quality post-graduate training system that includes a base hospital, and by extension, improve the quality of medical services at other hospitals in Mongolia. In addition to this project, JICA is planning to strengthen the training for medical professionals outside of base hospitals in related technical cooperation project, providing comprehensive assistance to improve basic social services in Mongolia.