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Jeddah Erfan Hospital to reopen gradually

Dr. Erfan and Bagedo Hospital has been allowed to reopen gradually after a two-month shutdown following the death of an eight-year-old boy operated upon at the facility, the head of the Jeddah Health Department said yesterday.

Dr. Sami Badawood said Health Minister Abdullah Al-Rabeeah issued the order to let Erfan resume operation after confirming reports submitted by health firms accredited by the Ministry of Health stating that the hospital has complied with health safety measures.

Such measures include utility connections and the safety of medical tools that the hospital uses, he said, adding that a committee set up by the ministry had monitored the hospital's various departments for a week and confirmed that the health firms had reported.

Earlier reports said the hospital administration had also submitted to the Ministry of Health proof that it had rectified all the 13 technical and administrative flaws uncovered by an official committee. The problems were mostly about hospital workers, safety and security arrangements and specifications of the Civil Defense.

"The hospital is going to open gradually and that its performance will be reviewed within six months from now," Badawood said.

Minister Al-Rabeeah placed the hospital under a two-month suspension two months ago upon the recommendation of a committee that investigated the death of Salah Al-Deen, an eight-year-old son of businessman Sheikh Yusuf Jameel, due to a fatal medical error during a surgery.

The Ministry of Health had said that the hospital would remain closed “until it regulates its medical and technical functions in accordance with medical standards.”

The Administrative Court in Jeddah had subsequently ruled that the hospital be allowed to operate after complying with the required reforms.

Erfan has around 3,000 employees, with Saudis accounting for more than half the number. The rest of the hospital staff are expatriates, notably Egyptians, Indians and Filipinos.

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