Medicine in Saudi Arabia

The health care system of Saudi Arabia is at a high level, according to some reports – it`s one of the best and the most modern in the world. Problems with health care exist not only in big cities but also in distanced from the center areas of the country. The only difference in health care for the citizens living in the large administrative districts, is the quality and the level of its – Saudi capital Riyadh concentrates most of the best clinics in the Middle East with highly specialized equipment and specialists.

The high degree of development of medicine in the country is explained largely by the fact that the government spends on health care rather large amount of cash – more than 8 percent of the budget of Saudi Arabia, which is high even in comparison with European countries.

Healthcare of the country is represented by: public health institutions, private charities and private hospitals in the city, public clinics and health posts in rural areas.

In a sufficiently large number in Saudi Arabia, there are pharmacies, including many round the clock. All of them offer a wide range of different drugs, mostly of foreign origin.

All medicine is provided in public health facilities in the Kingdom for citizens and pilgrims is free. Only service of pilgrims here annually allocates special teams of doctors, consisting of 12 thousand doctors, nurses and other medical staff. Such government actions explain the constant attention of the pilgrims, often conducive to the spread of epidemics.

For the local population government provides a full range of services, including prevention, inpatient and outpatient treatment, carrying out all kinds of operations, rehabilitation, etc.

Two-thirds of all existing clinics and hospitals – are state medical institutions subordinate to the ministries and departments, and only one-third – private clinics.

In coming 5-10 years, the government of Saudi Arabia plans to open about 2,000 health centers and 100 new hospitals, due to the fact that the country has seen an increase in chronic diseases and a significant increase in the aging population. This will entail the need to increase medical staff (according to preliminary estimates will need about 7,000 foreign doctors).

All medical assistance to foreign citizens, including basic necessities in Saudi Arabia is provided on a paid basis. When referring to private doctors require payment in cash on the spot, state clinics provide medical services within the insurance system, and therefore recommended a complete medical insurance of international standard. Private health institutions are working with cash and non-cash form of payment.