The Royal Institute of Health Sciences (RIHS) was established in January 1974 with UNICEF and WHO assistance as the Health School. It is committed to prepare and train health human resources with adequate skills, motivation and competence to provide comprehensive health care services to the people of Bhutan. It was upgraded as the Royal Institute of Health Sciences on 25th September 1989. The Institute was under the Medical Education Division, Ministry of Health till 2007. It became a founding member institute of the Royal University of Bhutan in 2003 and fully under RUB from 2008. The Institute became autonmous when the Royal University of Bhutan was de-linked from the Civil Service. The Director is the Head of the Institute.
This is the only health institute in the country where mid level health workers, nurses and technicians are given pre-service training. Therefore, the RIHS has the responsibility to prepare appropriate and adequate health human resources in different categories, such as General Nurse Midwife (GNM), Health Assistant (HA), and various categories of Hospital Technicians. These categories form the backbone of the health services to be delivered in all health care settings within the country. We also conduct various upgradation and continuing education courses for the inservice health workers. RIHS launched the Bachelors of Science in Public Health in 2010 and the B.Sc in Nursing and Midwifery in 2012. Currently there are 390 students and 60 faculty and support staff.
It is located towards the south of Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital(JDWNRH), Thimphu within a walking distance of 5 minutes from the main Hospital complex. Although it falls within the Municipal area of Thimphu city, it is about 2 Kilometers away from the main city center. It is very quiet, peaceful and conducive to teaching/leearning experiences.
The RIHS has a very good Library which is also designated as a WHO depository Library in the country for use by the students and staff and also the general public who are interested. The Institute also has a small Computer Laboratory with 15 workstations, administered under the central LAN system to facilitate student learning and teaching programs with lease line internet access.
A new Academic Block and 100 bedded Hostel are under construction with Government of India funding.