Italian Cooperation has been active in the health sector in Albania since 1997. After the initial emergency action, Italian intervention focused on strategic efforts to improve and develop the sector.
Italian Cooperation operates primarily through infrastructure rehabilitation programmes and the technological upgrading of local centres, implemented by the Albanian Ministry of Health.
One example is the Programme of “Rehabilitation and equipment of five polyclinics” in Tirana, Gjirokaster, Korça and Peshkopi, currently underway.
The NGO AISPO has also been active in this field through the Programme "Developing the Accident and Emergency Units of Shkoder Regional Hospital", which provided equipment, ambulances and technical assistance to the emergency units in Shkoder and Pukë.
There have also been supporting actions in the field of basic health care and personal assistance, financed through projects promoted by the Italian NGOs operating in Albania. These actions aim in particular at ensuring health care and assistance to vulnerable categories. For example, the Project "The prevention, treatment and physiotherapy assistance of disability in central and northern areas of Albania", implemented by the NGO Dokita, and that to supply "Community-based integrated services for alcoholics, drug addicts and those suffering from other forms of distress ", promoted by the Emmanuel Foundation.
In the same field, the Mother Teresa Hospital in Tirana has benefited from two initiatives to strengthen health services for specific patient groups.
ACAP and the Community of Sant'Egidio have promoted the Project "Protection of the rights of the mentally ill with chronic forms of mental illness" in order to establish group homes for patients with psychiatric disorders, as well as to train home care assistants and staff for psychiatric clinics.
For its part, the Magis NGO has implemented a Project for the "Early detection and social integration of deaf children" to provide hearing aids, specialised tests and therapy for auditory rehabilitation.

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