A Family Physician or General Practitioner is the primary healthcare provider in Saudi Arabia. This means that a patient will make an appointment with them if they have a new or non-emergency health concern. GPs/family doctors are doctors who have completed medical training in general practice. They have a broad range of knowledge and skills to help treat all health issues a patient might have throughout their lifetime.
The total number of physicians throughout the whole of Saudi Arabia is around 133 thousand - this number has increased from 66 thousand back in 2010. There are currently around 2,700 non-Saudi nationals practicing family medicine in the Kingdom.
Here at Odyssey Recruitment, we take a look at how you can get a family physician job in Saudi Arabia and what steps you need to take to get there.
What do you need?
To practise as a physician in Saudi Arabia you must keep your original professional license active and current whilst you work in the Kingdom - and have it with you.
All healthcare professionals such as nurses, doctors and allied health professionals must obtain a Saudi Commission for Health Specialities license which requires you to sit an exam.
Apply for a job
It is well advised that you try to find a job and be prepared before you head to Saudi Arabia for your dream job.
You may be in the country but you might have to wait a while for applications to go through and contracts to start so it will be beneficial to you to get a job in the bag beforehand. Once it has been confirmed and contracts have been signed, then you should get your paperwork sorted.
Foreign doctors make up around 73 percent of the total workforce in the Kingdom (2016). However, there are now plans in place to ‘Saudise’ the healthcare system and Saudi authorities will not renew employment contracts of expatriate health employees who have passed 10 years of service in the Kingdom. The plan is to gradually replace expats with Saudi employees to help ‘Saudise’ the health sector in the Kingdom.
Gaining a license to practise in Saudi Arabia will involve background checks, certificates and require you to have a certain amount of years practise depending on your speciality. You must hold a medical qualification from a school listed on the International Medical Education Directory of the Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research.
As for a visa, once you have been offered the job you were applying for and been successful then your employer will play a large part in helping you get the correct employment/residence visa.
If you are thinking about moving to Saudi Arabia for a job then register with Odyssey Recruitment today and we could help you find the perfect job.