Expulsion of Expat Doctors from Saudi Arabia

Expulsion of Expat Doctors from Saudi Arabia

24th May 2016

New 11 Point Plan for Saudi Health Sector.

Long serving expat doctors are to be expelled from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia after a period of 10 years continuous work under new plans being drawn up by Health Minister Tawfiq Al Rabia who was recently appointed to his role after a time as Commerce Minister. He has announced an 11 point plan to streamline the Ministry of Health and overhaul the healthcare sector. 

Expat Specialists and junior doctors will be allowed to work for 10 years and Consultants for 15 years. After that time, they will not be allowed to renew their visas or job contracts. Expat physicians will not be allowed to hold management or administrative posts.

The Minister plans to make all management positions electronic and doctors and other medically qualified professionals will be banned from holding administrative and non medical positions. At present large numbers of Saudi nationals who are medically qualified occupy administrative positions. They will be expected to return to practice.

There are a total of 317,000 expat health practitioners and doctors and only 139,000 Saudi counterparts.

Arab News, the Saudi daily newspaper said Al Rabiah faces numerous challenges in his first months as health minister, including streamlining medical insurance plans, upgrading facilities, boosting primary healthcare, tackling infectious diseases and curbing high staff turnover and an exodus of skilled healthcare staff to the private sector.

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