A new wing has opened at Mittaphab Hospital (Friendship Hospital) in Vientiane as part of efforts to improve the standard of healthcare and raise the country’s health services to international standards.
The new block will have about 308 beds, to add to the hospital’s existing 300-bed capacity.
The building will be fitted out with modern equipment for use in general diagnosis, as well as for radiology and magnetic resonance imaging and other specialised fields.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Mr Somdy Duangdy, attended the inauguration ceremony of the building on Monday.
The ceremony was also attended by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, Mr Martin Tlapa, along with high-level delegations including Lao health officials.
The new facility is expected to open to the public in July, as construction has not been completed on schedule. Work on the building began in 2015.
The construction cost of about 112 million euros (more than 800 billion kip) has been financed by a loan from the UniCredit Bank of Austria, facilitated by the government of the Czech Republic.
Minister of Health, Associate Prof. Dr Bounkong Syhavong, said Mittaphab plans to be the new face of hospital facilities in Laos and will operate in line with international standards.
The four-storey building, which occupies a site next to the existing 29-year-old hospital, covers an area of 21,000 square metres.
The extension to the hospital is in line with the government’s policy to modernise healthcare through the use of the latest equipment and skilled personnel.
The ministry’s goal is to upgrade facilities and improve services through better quality treatment and technological innovations, the minister said.
“We hope the presence of improved facilities in Laos will encourage more people to seek treatment here instead of crossing the border,” he added.
The new hospital will have modern equipment so that doctors can make more accurate diagnoses and prescribe the correct treatment.
The new facilities will enable medical personnel to improve their skills in endoscopic surgery, cardiology, and the treatment of hypertension and cancer.
The hospital will continue its policy to provide free treatment for people on low incomes to ensure that everyone has access to healthcare.
Mittaphab Hospital has at least 30 wards and employs more than 500 medical staff, including 100 doctors. Some 900-1,000 people visit the outpatient department every day, while 300-400 people require overnight stays.