Swedish surgeons return to Ulaan Baatar prison hospital, June 2014

Hernia International in Ulaan Baatar prison


During our visit in 2013 Hernia International came in contact with prison authorities in Ulaan Baatar. They needed a surgeon to do some operations in the Correction facilities central hospital on inmate patients. We operated for two days and agreed on to come back this year to do some more surgery because it was not possible to get a local surgeon to the hospital.  


I and my Swedish colleague Mr Christian Andersson came for a two weeks stay in Ulaan Baatar this summer together with the rest of the hernia team. They went to the countryside and we stayed in the capital and worked at the central prison hospital. Every morning we were picked up by the head of medical services Dr Anargul in a police car and driven to the hospital through the congested traffic. Often we used the siren and blue lights to get through


To our great surprise the prison hospital that served all prisons in Mongolia was very well kept and staffed. About 15 doctors and plenty of nurses staffed the facility, but no surgeon. There was an X-ray, ultrasound and possibilities to do both gastroscopy and colonoscopy. We had a modern operating theater with new equipment except for surgical instruments that were quite outdated. We operated different cases every day with a lot of urological cases, open cholecystectomies and of course some hernias, even two cases of abdominal injuries from prisons in the countryside.


In our opinion the authorities took quite well care of the inmates and treated them with respect. They had a lot of freedom to move around in the corridors and in the wards during day time. We could speak freely with them even if there was a huge language barrier. We had the opportunity to see a local prison in the country side during a week end trip as well and even there the conditions were decent.

We were very well taken care of by the prison staff and the inmates were happy that we could help them.

 Martin Kriz