The healthcare situation in the US state of Mississippi has become so desperate that it rivals third world conditions, and so state planners are looking to a model developed in Iran to save lives where community ‘health houses’ are established.
[Dr Aaron] Shirley and [James] Miller visited Iran in May and were astonished to be welcomed with open arms. When they went to remote villages to see the health houses, the Iranians were equally amazed.
“They told us this is a miracle,” said Miller. “Not only were Americans coming here, but also they were learning from us rather than telling us what to do.”
One villager exclaimed: “We always knew rain fell down but never knew it could fall up.”
They signed an agreement with Shiraz University to form the Mississippi/Islamic Republic of Iran rural health project and applied to the US Treasury for a special licence for “Iranian transactions”.
“The Iranians are a proud people with 5,000 years of history and huge contributions to science and medicine,” said a State Department official.
“A project like the Mississippi one is incredibly powerful as it appeals to that Iranian concept of history. It’s a great way to keep the door open between the two countries.”