Saudi Arabia needs 30,000 medics by end of year

The country needs at least 2,958 new primary healthcare centers, with 685 needed in Riyadh alone.

Published: Updated:

The Saudi health sector will need over 10,000 doctors and 20,000 nurses by the end of the year, according to a recent report issued by the Ministry of Economy and Planning, Makkah daily reported.

Health institutions in all regions continue to be in dire need of doctors and nurses, the report said.

The country needs at least 2,958 new primary healthcare centers, with 685 needed in Riyadh alone.

Makkah province needs 620 centers while the Northern Borders needs 43 centers, the report said.

Other regions should have centers based on the local population needs and location.

In its report, the ministry also criticized the financial and administrative system used in the health sector, describing it as too centralized.

It said the system prevents decision-makers from making the right decision at the right time, especially with regard to the management of hospitals.

The ministry urged the health sector to reconsider its current financial and administrative systems and give health institutions more power when making decisions that tackle emergency situations or other pressing matters.

The report said it is time the health sector provided a system that is effective and efficient and allows its users to coordinate, plan, follow up and supervise the quality of services.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Labor said it hopes to provide 8,000 job opportunities nationwide for Saudi pharmacists and assistant pharmacists over the next six years.

The salaries will be in the range of SR8,000 to SR12,000, Al-Madinah daily reported.

This step coincides with efforts by the Ministry of Labor to open up new sectors for the employment of Saudi women.

A deadline of Oct. 2, 2016, has been set for creating more jobs for women in the sector, especially in pharmacies in malls.

Statistics show that there is high unemployment among women in the Kingdom. A source said there is coordination between the ministry and investors in the pharmacies sector to attract Saudis.

The source said there are plans to improve the labor market and increase salaries.

Chairman of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (JCCI) pharmacies committee Dr. Yusuf Al-Harthi said a meeting would be held with the Human Resources Development Fund to discuss how the sector can be supported by the fund, apart from training graduates of institutes. Al-Harthi said Saudis account for barely 25 percent of pharmacists

This article initially appeared on the Saudi Gazette on Nov. 17, 2014.

Top Content Trending