Saudia-Online the Net Gate to Saudi Arabia Market
Saudi Arabia Business News
Business Opportunities
Business Guide
Companies Directory
Corporate Websites
Currency Exchange
Saudi Arabia Events
Local News
Saudi Stocks
Monthly Economic Reports
Saudi Arabia Travel
Saudi Arabia Weather
Submit Press Release
Read Press Releases


Free Websites
 for Saudi
companies and Establishment
for Foreign companies 
interested in exporting
to Saudi Arabia

Community Sign Up

Message Boards
Should women be in the army?

About Saudi Arabia
About us

Arabic cuisine
Arabic newspapers

Arabic radio and TV

Free downloads

Saudi Arabia ISP's

Science and Technology

Send us feedback


Traveling to Saudi Arabia

Phone Free

Top Saudi Arabia Business News


Panel formed to draw up new health strategy
Jeddah,12th March 2001

Crown Prince Abdullah, deputy premier and commander of the National Guard, has ordered the formation of a committee to carry out a total review of the health services in the Kingdom. Planning Minister Khaled Al-Gosaibi is heading the panel that can also seek the help of international health planning and management experts to work out the country’s new health strategy.

According to Al-Madinah newspaper, the committee included Dr. Abdul Ilah Saaty, director of patient relations at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center in Jeddah, Dr. Saeed Taher of the King Faisal Specialist Hospital, Dr. Khalaf Al-Motairy of the Defense Ministry’s medical service, Eid Al-Ammary of the National Guard’s health affairs, and Dr. Suleiman Al-Sohaimy of the Internal Security Forces Hospital.

“The formation of a committee to review health services reflects the desire of the Kingdom’s leadership to promote health services in the country,” Dr. Saaty said in an article published in Al-Eqtisadiah newspaper.

Health services have become very costly, especially because of the high technology, he said, adding that most countries suffer due to the growing health care bills. He estimated annual international expenditure on health care at more than $2.2 trillion. Saudi Arabia spends 10 percent of its national budget on health care services. “This sum will not be enough to meet the government’s growing commitments.”

Dr. Saaty said the imbalance between the resources available with the government and the increase in demand would negatively affect the quality of service. This would result in shortage in medicines and other supplies, frequent breakdowns of equipment, a long waiting list for admissions and operations, low-cost and inefficient manpower and a brain drain.

Demand for health services has increased considerably with the increase in population, he said. In Saudi Arabia, population is growing at a rate of 3.7 percent, the highest in the world. He pointed out that average life expectancy in the Kingdom rose from 61 to 71 years within the last 10 years.

In order to cut down the growing health expenditures, Saaty proposed to speed up implementation of the health insurance system on both Saudis and expatriates in cooperation with government hospitals. The National Guard and King Faisal Specialist Hospitals have already started providing health services to insured clients.

“We should also encourage donations, voluntary services, endowments and charitable projects in the health sector to create new sources of finance,” he said. He suggested privatization of certain services at government hospitals and to allow the hospitals to provide health services at a fee after the normal work hours.

He also suggested imposition of fees for issuing licenses to private health institutions and medical personnel to create new revenue sources. “The government hospitals must follow economical methods to cut unnecessary expenditures,” he said.

He suggested transfer of government hospitals to the private sector as a long-term solution. “Privatization must be resorted to for achieving optimum use of human and material resources.”

Dr. Saaty called for a revamp of the Health Ministry’s organizational structure and decentralization of power in order to speed up decisions. He suggested formation of two independent general organizations: one for hospitals and another for primary health care. Hospitals should be given flexibility in management and planning. He also proposed that health colleges and institutes be brought under the Higher Education Ministry.

Saaty stressed the need for appropriate buildings for hospitals and health centers. “At present all health centers and 50 percent of hospitals are working in buildings constructed for housing purposes.” Referring to the 2,000 health centers ordered by the king in 1985, he said the project had not been implemented yet. He proposed to implement the project in phases, starting with 300 to 500 centers at a time, with the private sector support.

Dr. Saaty proposed a unified wage scale for doctors and paramedics to stop the brain drain to private sector. He also called for greater coordination among the Health Ministry, health affairs sections of other departments, and the private sector. “Now there is clear lack of coordination, leading to many problems including waste of energy and resources,” he said, calling for the formation of a national council for health coordination.

Source: Arab News

Send Page To a Friend  

Starting Business with Saudi Arabia Use the Saudi Business Guide

Join the mailing list
Your Email Address:

Archives Section

Back to Business News


Free services in Saudia-Online
Free services

Free Websites for 
Saudi Arabia

Free services

Free Websites for Saudi companies and Establishment

Free services

Free Websites for
Saudi Arabia Travel
Agencies and Companies

Free services

Free Domain

Free services

List your Saudi
Arabia Company in
our Directory

Free services

Subscribe to our

Free services Jobs......
Post a job!

Job Openings

Free services

Advertise Free
Classifieds section. 

Gift Reminder

Get Stock Quote: Enter Symbol(s)

Symbol Lookup
My Portfolio
Our Privacy Vow 


Make Saudia-Online My Start Page  -  Bookmark Saudia-Online
Contact Us -  Advertising Info -  About Us -  Terms Of Service -  Add My Site -  Privacy Policy 

© 1999-2000 by Horizon for Commercial Development Co., Ltd, All rights reserved.
  Saudia-Online,Malls2Save,JeddahMalls,RiyadhMalls,RiyadhShops,SaudiMade,Travel2Saudi and HDC are  trademarks of Horizon for Commercial Development Co. Ltd.  P.O. Box 14657, Jeddah 21434, Saudi Arabia
 Telephone 00966-2-6693585, Fax 00966-2-6693472

14 March 2001 07:23:53 PM

Click Here!