Top compensation proposed for MERS-hit medical staff

Updated 12 April 2014
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Top compensation proposed for MERS-hit medical staff

The Ministry of Health is weighing a proposal to consider health workers who die of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus as martyrs, and to qualify for compensation like military and police officers killed in the line of duty.
Abdullah Al-Asiri, assistant deputy minister for preventive medicine, said the ministry’s human resources department was also considering moral and financial support for those medical staff dealing with infectious diseases. Al-Asiri’s statement follows the death of doctors and paramedics who contracted MERS.
Meanwhile, Makkah Gov. Prince Mishaal bin Abdullah arrived at King Fahd Hospital here Thursday to check on the condition of patients and staff. He urged health officials in the city to take all precautionary measures to contain the deadly virus and protect public health.
Prince Mishaal told several citizens and residents at the hospital the situation was under control, and that they should not worry about a fresh MERS outbreak in the city. He urged the hospital staff to provide the best care for patients.
The governor was briefed by hospital officials on the measures taken to prevent the spread of the virus. “We have sterilized all the emergency units at the hospital and trained our workers including nurses and paramedics on how to handle MERS cases. We have also advised visitors on how to protect themselves from the disease,” one official told the governor.
The official stressed that the hospital has not received any confirmed MERS cases over the past two days. “Our laboratories have tested samples from about 900 suspected cases and found only 20 of them positive,” he said.
The governor inspected the hospital’s sterilization unit, one of the most advanced in the Middle East, as well as medical equipment used for testing samples from suspected cases. The emergency ward at the hospital was shut down for 24 hours on Monday.
A paramedic at King Abdul Aziz Hospital was among two victims of the disease this week, bringing the nationwide death toll to 66.
Related report — Page 3


Saudi Arabia’s King Salman will patronize the launch of the Qiddiya Project

Updated 24 April 2018
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Saudi Arabia’s King Salman will patronize the launch of the Qiddiya Project

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman will patronize on Wednesday the launch of the “Qiddiya” Project which is the new entertainment, sports and cultural destination in the Kingdom.
The project will be built in Al-Giddiya area, some 40 km west of the capital, Riyadh.
The foundation stone ceremony of will be attended by a host of local and international officials, as well as a number of decision-makers, major investors and representatives of the regional and international companies, marking the launch of the project’s formal infrastructure. The first phase will be completed by 2022.
In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Dr. Fahd bin Abdullah Tounsi, Secretary General of the Foundation Council of the Qiddiya Project of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) said that the inauguration of this vital project is a real translation of the aspirations of the Kingdom’s wise leadership and its relentless efforts to develop mega projects that would contribute effectively to achieve many direct and indirect economic returns, and to advance sustainable development for the benefit of the homeland and the citizen, in accordance with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.
“About two-thirds of the Kingdom’s population is under the age of 35. There is a great need for Qiddiya Project to provide them with entertainment. The project will save about $30 billion, which will be used to develop the domestic economy and create new job opportunities for Saudi youths,” he added.
For his part, Michael Reininger, Chief Executive of Qiddiya, said, “we are delighted to be a key contributor to boost the Kingdom’s economic development and investment, not only for the entertainment industry but also to projects that will develop the capabilities the young Saudi people.”