Ghani lays groundwork for Saudi-funded hospital

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani speaks during a news conference in Kabul, Afghanistan on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (REUTERS)
Updated 01 July 2018
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Ghani lays groundwork for Saudi-funded hospital

  • Saudi Arabia pays for the maternity section, which has 200 beds
  • Afghans annually spend over $300 million on medical treatment, mostly in India

KABUL: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Sunday laid the foundation of a 1,000-bed hospital complex which is partly sponsored by Saudi Arabia in the eastern city of Jalalabad.
The mega-project — the first of its kind in the country’s history — will be completed in two years, and will offer treatment to patients with disabilities and those suffering from tuberculosis.
The $200 million hospital complex will also include a maternity center.
“Various donors cover the cost of the complex. Saudi Arabia pays for the maternity section, which has 200 beds,” Dr. Najibullah Kamawal, head of the public health department of Jalalabad city, told Arab News after the inauguration of the complex.
Kamawal said the Kingdom’s role in building part of the complex was its first major help to the Ghani administration, which is seeking to establish closer ties with the Gulf nations.
Attaullah Khogyani, a spokesman for the province’s governor, said the completion of the complex will drastically reduce the need for Afghans to travel abroad for medical treatment.
Afghans annually spend over $300 million on medical treatment, mostly in India, according to officials.
Hours after Ghani’s visit to Jalalabad, a suicide bomber killed several people outside the governor’s office in the heart of the city.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Earlier in the day, Ghani met with government officials in the governor’s office. It was not clear if the attack was linked with his visit.


King Salman approves health care programs

King Salman
Updated 16 July 2018
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King Salman approves health care programs

  • Clinical coding licenses and standards will be included in unified national standards for accreditation of health facilities
  • The training program aims to improve the quality of health care and control expenditure

JEDDAH: King Salman on Sunday approved the implementation of an electronic sick-leave system, and directed relevant authorities to coordinate with the Civil Service Ministry in case of any amendments to the terms for granting sick leave.
He also approved a program to train Saudi professionals in clinical coding. The Saudi Health Council and the Human Resources Development Fund (Hadaf) are cooperating to implement the training program, whose aim is to encourage the private health sector to hire the program’s graduates by leveraging the funding provided by Hadaf.
The training program aims to improve the quality of health care and control expenditure. The Health Ministry’s General Directorate of Licenses will establish an electronic network linked to the licensing system of the Clinical Coding Department at the National Center for Health Information.
The Council of Cooperative Health Insurance will work with the Saudi Health Council to develop controls and find ways to employ graduates at private health care institutions.
Clinical coding licenses and standards will be included in unified national standards for accreditation of health facilities.
This initiative is part of the Saudi Health Council’s efforts to contribute to achieving the Vision 2030 reform plan, whose objectives include the Saudization of certain professions that are vital for the national economy.