Jouf governor inspects projects in Dumat Al-Jandal province

Jouf Gov. Prince Faisal bin Nawaf bin Abdul Aziz in Dumat Al-Jandal province. (SPA)
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Updated 13 August 2020

Jouf governor inspects projects in Dumat Al-Jandal province

  • Prince Faisal expressed his thanks to the Ministry of Tourism
  • He also visited the Jouf regional museum

SAKAKA: Jouf Gov. Prince Faisal bin Nawaf bin Abdul Aziz on Wednesday inspected service, health and tourism projects in Dumat Al-Jandal province, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

He first visited the conference and events hall, where he was greeted by the governor of Dumat Al-Jandal, Talal Al-Tamiat, the region’s secretary, Atef Al-Sharaan, and the mayor of Dumat Al-Jandal, Fahd Al-Anzi.

Al-Sharaan briefed Prince Faisal on the project’s components such as the main halls and multipurpose reception areas, a theater, outdoor squares and facilities. These will host and organize national and official events.

At the end of his tour the governor agreed to the project’s name: Prince Faisal bin Nawaf bin Abdul Aziz Convention Center.

He then visited the Jouf regional museum, where he was briefed on its proportions and details. The museum features a timeline of the Jouf area and its archaeological and heritage sites, in addition to archaeological and heritage monuments illustrating aspects of the Jouf civilization.

The museum also has halls for permanent exhibitions and visiting exhibitions, lecture halls, halls for children, workshops for photography and restoration, a library, administrative offices, public facilities and support services that enable visitors to see the contents of the museum easily.

Prince Faisal expressed his thanks to the Ministry of Tourism and its regional branch for their efforts in preserving the region’s monuments and history, and implementing programs aimed at introducing the archaeological and historical sites of Jouf.

He then inspected the outpatient building development and expansion project of Dumat Al-Jandal General Hospital, where he was received by Fares Al-Ruwaili, the region’s director of the General Directorate of Health Affairs.

Prince Faisal toured the project, which consists of 53 clinics in various medical specialties, an outpatient pharmacy, and blood-sampling laboratory for outpatient clinics.

He urged the quick completion of the project in accordance with the highest standards and for it to be equipped with modern devices to boost the health system in the province.

Al-Ruwaili expressed his sincere thanks to the governor and his deputy for their support for health practitioners and the development of the health service system in the region. 

Prince Faisal hailed the efforts made by the government in the municipal field and the support for municipal projects benefiting citizens, urging everyone to redouble their efforts to complete these projects on time.

Saudi health authorities ready to join trials of COVID-19 vaccines

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health is working with a different Chinese company to evaluate whether the vaccine it is developing is effective. (REUTERS)
Updated 22 September 2020

Saudi health authorities ready to join trials of COVID-19 vaccines

  • Ministry of Health and King Abdullah International Medical Research Center have been working with two Chinese drug companies

JEDDAH: King Abdullah International Medical Research Center (KAIMRC) in Saudi Arabia is preparing to take part in advanced trials of one or two COVID-19 vaccines.

About 40 potential vaccines are being tested on humans, nine of which are at the advanced stage of clinical trials to evaluate their safety and effectiveness in protecting people against a virus that has infected more than 31 million people around the world.

The center confirmed its readiness to cooperate with the Kingdom’s Ministry of Health and the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) and participate in tests of one or two of the nine vaccines that are in the third phase of clinical trials, during which large-scale testing on humans takes place.

Dr. Naif Al-Harbi, the head of KAIMRC’s drug-development unit, told Al-Ekhbariya TV news channel that it is unprecedented to have nine vaccines in stage three of clinical trials so soon, less than a year, after the emergence of a new virus.

“Approval or disapproval of any drug normally follows the third stage of its clinical trials, which is the last stage,” he added. “Since the pandemic, KAIMRC has been in continuous contact with a number of drug companies in four countries (that are developing vaccines).”

KAIMRC has been working with one Chinese pharmaceutical company in particular to help evaluate and accelerate the development of its vaccine, he said.

“Over the past two months, we have been in contact with Sinovac to scientifically evaluate its product, in term of the tests on animals and a study of the results of stages one and two on humans,” Al-Harbi said.

He added that the Kingdom’s Ministry of Health is working with a different Chinese company to evaluate whether the vaccine it is developing is effective. A number of factors are taken into consideration when reaching a conclusion.

“We examine the drugs and make sure they have caused no side effects when tested on humans, or that they just caused insignificant side effects,” said Al-Harbi. “We also look into the manufacturing company’s profile to ensure it follows the standards of the good manufacturing practices, and that the company’s products are consistently produced and controlled according to quality standards.”

He added that SFDA is also doing a great job in ensuring that vaccines are safe, to avoid any risks to the health of people in the Kingdom.

In a message posted on Twitter, KAIMRC said that some countries, such as Russia, China and the UAE, have given doctors the green light to use some vaccines on patients before that have been approved, but only in emergency cases and when the results of early clinical studies indicate that the vaccine is safe.

On Monday, Saudi Arabia announced 27 additional COVID-19-related deaths. The death toll in the country now stands at 4,512.

Meanwhile, 492 new cases have been confirmed in the Kingdom, bringing the total number of people infected by the virus to 330,246. Of those, 14,235 cases remain active and 1,133 patients are in a critical condition.

The Ministry of Health said Makkah recorded the highest number of new cases, with 58, followed by Jeddah with 53, and Madinah with 38.

A further 1,060 people in the Kingdom have recovered from COVID-19, bringing the total number of recoveries to 311,499. A total of 6,093,601 tests for the virus have been carries out in the country, including 43,652 in the past 24 hours.