Medical News & Perspectives
August 13, 2008

Iraqi Health Minister Works to Reform, Restore Neglected System

JAMA. 2008;300(6):639. doi:10.1001/jama.300.6.639

The wail of an ambulance siren pierces the relative quiet of a downtown Chicago hotel dining room. Iraq's Minister of Health, Salih Al Hasnawi, MD, stops in mid-sentence until the siren passes. “It's like Iraq,” he says, injecting ironic humor into a somber conversation. During a trip to the United States last May, Al Hasnawi stopped in Chicago to speak with a group of experts who are investigating ways to use communications technologies and telemedicine to improve access to health care in Iraq.

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