Turkmenistan - Health

As of 2000, systematic health care reforms had been undertaken, including enhancement of primary care, training programs for medical personnel, and infrastructure improvements. Serious inadequacies remained in the condition of medical facilities and equipment. Primary care was provided by two types of rural health units and by urban health centers. The number of hospital beds has been greatly reduced since independence. As of 1999 total health care expenditure was estimated at 5.2% of GDP. As of 1999, there were an estimated 3 physicians and 11.5 hospital beds per 1,000 people. In 2000, 58% of the population had access to safe drinking water and 100% had adequate sanitation.

Immunization rates for children up to one year old in 1994 were tuberculosis, 97%; diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus, 87%; polio, 94%; and measles, 90%. As of 1999 the rates for DPT and measles were, respectively, 98% and 97%. The infant mortality rate in 2000 was 27 per 1,000 live births. The maternal mortality rate in 1998 was 65 per 100,000 live births. Average life expectancy was 66 years in 2000.

In this former Soviet republic, mortality rates have increased significantly since the breakup. Cardiovascular disease deaths numbered at 13,638 in 1994. Leading causes of death per 100,000 people in 1990 were communicable diseases and maternal/perinatal causes, 216; noncommunicable diseases, 737; and injuries, 68. There were 90 reported cases of tuberculosis per 100,000 people in 1999. Only one case of AIDS was reported in 1995. As of 1999 the number of people living with HIV/AIDS was estimated at fewer than 100, as were the number of deaths from AIDS. HIV prevalence was fewer than 0.01 per 100 adults.

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