Saudi health facilities force insured patients to pay with cash

Medical workers leave the hospital's emergency department, in this April 27, 2014 file photo, in the Saudi capital Riyadh. (AFP)
Updated 25 November 2017
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Saudi health facilities force insured patients to pay with cash

RIYADH: The Council of Cooperative Health Insurance has said that health facilities do not have the right to demand payments from insured people, and that the punishment for such violation is a suspension.
The assurance came after repeated complaints that some health centers and hospitals refuse to register insurance claims and force patients to pay cash. The Health Insurance Council said that this procedure is illegal.
Yasser bin Ali Almuaarek, spokesman for the Council of Cooperative Health Insurance, said this constituted a violation of the council’s regulations and exposed the offender to punishments including suspension of the facility, according to an investigation published by Al-Eqtisadiah newspaper.
Almuaarek said that health facilities should adhere to the requirements of the accreditation of service providers, and should provide services promptly and observe the time limits for sending approvals to the insurance companies, as stated in article 90 of the executive regulations.
Almuaarek said that the number of insured people as per Nov. 22 was 11,992,727.


System launched to help predict, plan for heavy rain in Saudi Arabia

Updated 15 July 2018
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System launched to help predict, plan for heavy rain in Saudi Arabia

  • "Matir" uses all the data to provide predictions and alerts for all of Saudi Arabia’s 286 secretariats and municipalities
  • Matir features a control panel that shows the overall forecast of flooding risk for the coming five days

JEDDAH: The Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs has launched a system to help predict and plan for heavy rain and flooding across the Kingdom
The high-tech system, called Matir, is the first of its kind in the Arab region. It is designed to help the authorities plan early for extreme weather situations, especially rain, and make the best decisions to minimize the loss of life and property.
To do this, it uses data from satellites and regional and international weather centers and monitoring stations. This raw data is modeled, with equations and algorithms applied to make forecasts with a high degree of accuracy.
Matir features a control panel that shows the overall forecast of flooding risk for the coming five days. The information is color coded based on the risk level, with yellow and red representing the highest risks.
The system also provides standard hour-by-hour weather predictions for next five days, including temperatures, wind speed and direction, rainfall intensity, mist and clouds, as well as relative humidity.
The system uses all the data to provide predictions and alerts for all of Saudi Arabia’s 286 secretariats and municipalities. It also provides radar data detailing the location and direction of thunderstorms and lightning.