Sudan scores poorly among other MENA countries, ranked 21 of 22 (only Mauritania behind). Sudan has about the same ranking on all indicators, except overweight, but in the case of Sudan the low number of overweight individuals is more an indicator of poverty than healthy lifestyles.
Sudan has poorly developed systems for health care. With the exception of the big cities there are few advanced health services. Even in Khartoum there are only a few examples of good institutions, and not enough to cover the needs for all citizens. A plan from the 1970's aimed at provide primary health care all across the country, but his has yet to be realized, much due to lack of finances.
Sudan suffers from an extreme lack of good doctors, in a country of great distances, a density of only 0.3 per 1000 inhabitants, is in particular a challenge. Infrastructure has been developed to offer mainly basic services, reflected in that there are 2.3 hospital beds per doctor (well-developed countries are at about 1.5 or less).
There is nothing suggesting an improvement at the moment, expenses are low both in percentage and in real money: 3.8% of GDP and only $61 per capita.
Health conditions and diseases
Large parts of Sudan's population suffer from poor hygiene, bad infrastructure and bad water quality. Diseases of Sudan include malaria, dysentery and other gastrointestinal diseases, and tuberculosis. Bilharziasis is a great problem for peoples along the White and Blue Niles. Trypanosomiasis, sleeping sickness are widespread in the southern regions. Meningitis, measles, whooping cough, infectious hepatitis, syphilis and gonorrhea are other relatively common diseases.
Some regions of Sudan have problems of seasonal undernourishment and malnutrition is still a problem some places, and in particular in the south. Malnutrition in Sudan is very high, affecting 27% of the population.
Figures of 2006 from WHO show that 70% have good access to clean water, 35% access to good sanitation. There are relatively little difference between towns and countryside.