TheFace: Sara Almoosa, Saudi marketing director

Sara Abdulaziz Almoosa with her Husband Hani Alshaikh Mubarak. (AN photo by Ziyad Alarfaj)
Updated 10 January 2020

TheFace: Sara Almoosa, Saudi marketing director

  • I am focused on developing community-based integrated care that is changing the way Al-Ahsa residents are living — this is was what I was meant to do
  • Kindness and care go a long way, and we need more of both to help build a stronger and more integrated community.

I’m the marketing and CSR director at Almoosa Specialist Hospital in Al-Ahsa.

I grew up in Al-Ahsa region in the 1980s and early 1990s when the area wasn’t as developed as it is now. One shortcoming was that we only had health centers, so residents had to drive for hours to reach a major city hospital, a disadvantage that was turned to an advantage after a few years.

As a child, I was misdiagnosed with a form of cancer in my leg. This paved the way for a grand project spearheaded by my father, Abdul Aziz Almoosa, who was told by a colleague that he should take me to the Boston Children’s Hospital to visit the best orthopedic oncologist there.

The treatment process was unprecedented, from patient care to the support and information we received. Dr. Mark Gebhardt called my father at his hotel room and told him that I didn’t have cancer. On returning home, my father decided to open a hospital in the region, Almoosa Specialist Hospital.

He gave back to his home region in the best way possible, ensuring that all patients and visitors get the same standard of treatment that Boston Children’s Hospital offered me. My father’s passion and desire to give back to the community motivated our family.

I was educated in Al-Ahsa and received my BA in mathematics, but I was uncertain what wanted to do after graduating. I got married in college, had my first child soon after and focused on volunteer work, but still never found my calling.

In 2012, the hospital faced a crisis following the discovery of coronavirus. This was a major blow, but it didn’t deter us. My father’s vision was to ensure the best care for patients, and we couldn’t let the issue result in the collapse of the hospital, a major source of treatment for many in the area.

I found myself involved in the restructuring process and helping to rebuild by focusing on our social responsibility to the community. I found my calling.

With my background in volunteering and community service, I was able to help both society and hospital. The revamping helped both parties to grow alongside one another, and highlighted community health awareness by involving every member of the community.

My husband, Hani Alshaikh Mubarak, and I try to encourage these values in our daughters. We want them to understand how important it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to keep active. It doesn’t matter if they want to get into the family business or not, so long as they understand the concept of giving back to the community and being the best versions of themselves.

Organizing annual marathons, developing parks and accommodating children with special needs means it’s more than volunteering now. I am focused on developing community-based integrated care that is changing the way Al-Ahsa residents are living — this is was what I was meant to do.

A few years ago, we invited Dr. Mark Gebhardt to the hospital. He was moved to learn how a simple task of taking care of a patient and their family affected our lives. Kindness and care go a long way, and we need more of both to help build a stronger and more integrated community.


Saudi app fights fake promotions, discounts

Some stores raise the prices then claim they are offering discounts. (SPA)
Updated 48 min 49 sec ago

Saudi app fights fake promotions, discounts

  • Companies and online businesses can apply for a discount license and promote seasonal sales through the application

RIYADH: A new electronic app will now protect consumers against fake and illegal discount offers and promotions, said a spokesman for the Saudi Commerce Ministry.
The app will also let consumers check if sales are still valid and useable. If they are invalid, consumers can report violations directly to the ministry, he said on Tuesday.
The spokesman, Abdulrahman Al-Hussain, said that companies offering discounts are required to follow certain procedures. They must apply for a license, mention products covered by discounts, provide a list of product prices before and after discount, give a discount percentage and put a before and after prices on a product price tag, he said.
The e-discounts app also lists companies that have a license to offer discounts, and explains the types of discounts licensed by the ministry. The app can be accessed on smartphones.

HIGHLIGHT

The e-discounts app lists companies that have a license to offer discounts.

Another feature available on the app is the ability to search for consumables or companies and show the percentage and duration of discounts. It also allows consumers to find the location of a company through Google Maps.
“The ministry requires the companies to print the license of discounts and display it properly. For online stores, the license of discounts should be clearly shown on the website,” said Al-Hussain.
“Companies and online businesses can apply for a discount license and promote seasonal sales through the application. This service gives discounts, sales, and promotions more credibility,” he added.
Muhammad Al-Hamad, a former president of the Consumer Protection Association, said the ministry should double-check the prices before discounts and ensure there is a price tag showing the price and the value-added tax, as well as the discount percentage and price after tax.
“Some stores raise the prices then claim they are offering discounts. The consumer should search for the quality before the price and also ask if there is an aftersales service,” he said. “The consumer should also demand a receipt because this is the only proof showing that he or she has bought the product,” he added.