Dr. Reza Malekzadeh Slams Pro-Population Growth Policy
Dr. Malekzadeh, a gastroenterologist, an ex-health minister, and an advisor to Rouhani, slammed the current pro-population growth policy in Iran saying that increased population without improved education and employment opportunities can be disastrous for the country (1).
He also outlined some of the healthcare priorities that need to be tackled by the new administration, including solving state owned hospitals' debt issues and improved access to healthcare through a "family physician" program.
The reinstatement of sensible family planning maybe one of the few issues that don't require micromanagement by the supreme leader. President Rouhani may have some leeway to tackle population growth without the need for step by step blessing from Khamenei.
In 2006, Ahmadinejad called for an increase in the Iranian population to 120 million and abandoning family planning. The simple one-dimensional thinking was that, unlike the reformist child in the cover photo, "more children means more Basij".
In this interview with Fars news, Dr. Malekzadeh stressed that he is not interested in the position of "Health Minister", as there are more worthy candidates. Translated from Persian, that means he will likely be the next Minister of Health.