Thursday, 01 November 2007
By Adel Al-Malki
JEDDAH - The Ministry of Health will expand the blood test that citizens must take before marriage to include AIDS and hepatitis testing, over the next few months, said Minister Hamad Al-Manie at a health symposium in Jeddah on Wednesday. Al-Manie also said that the number of Saudi doctors in the Kingdom has not broken 21 percent in the last 15 years, despite the great rise in graduation rates at Saudi medical colleges. He attributed this to the increasing population and lamented how many doctors are stationed in the big cities.
"It is necessary at this time to send Saudi doctors to villages and areas away from large cities, because ... they understand the needs between doctor and patient," Al-Manie said.
The Minister of Health also unveiled a recommendation about lifting the salaries of doctors working in government hospitals to equal counterparts in other government sectors.
"The study's recommendations ... will cope with the leakage of cadres to work in the private sector," he said.