More expats and citizens seeking medical treatment abroad

Updated 25 October 2014

More expats and citizens seeking medical treatment abroad

Many Saudis and expatriates here claim that increasingly poor local medical services have forced them to seek treatment abroad.
Sameer Khan, an Indian patient based in Jeddah, claimed his health deteriorated after being given the wrong prescription, forcing him to travel home for further medical assistance.
“I was suffering from hyperacidity. An overdose of antibiotics prescribed by the doctor caused an infection and later a stomach ulcer. I immediately traveled to my country after this,” he said.
He said that there seems to be doctors practicing in the country who do not have experience and make unnecessary mistakes.
Neda Taher, a Riyadh resident, said: “My mother had severe abdominal pain. Even after consulting a doctor here and taking medication, the pain was still there. Later we traveled to the US and consulted a doctor, only to learn that she was suffering from endometrial cancer (uterine cancer). However, she was diagnosed at an early stage.”
Ahmed Kaid, a Jeddah resident, said: “A doctor mistakenly prescribed my wife a high dose of tablets used to treat diabetes. We failed to notice the difference between her usual pills and the ones she had been given. She continued taking them for several weeks, which resulted in lowering her blood sugar level.”
“Such carelessness by doctors can result in the death of patients. It is important that they understand how patients feel and how a specific treatment affects them,” he said.
Saleh Al-Shehry, a physician at a government hospital, said: “Overprescribing often occurs when doctors are misled by patients about their symptoms. Doctors may have had academic training but the point is only patients know how they feel and it is necessary that they describe their symptoms accurately to avoid any medical errors."
"Moreover, we are in an era of 'patient knows best.' They have the right to ask doctors why each medicine is prescribed, possible reaction and other questions.”
He said many people seek treatment abroad based on advice from non-medical people, instead of consulting a health care provider. “We are currently working on increasing trust in our health care services with quality programs and patient feedback. There is also training provided for better doctor-patient communication.”


350,000 books to feature at Jeddah fair

Updated 14 November 2019

350,000 books to feature at Jeddah fair

JEDDAH: Hundreds of authors from around the world are preparing to take part in a prestigious Saudi book festival.

The Jeddah International Book Fair, to be staged in South Obhur from Dec. 11 to 21, will feature more than 350,000 volumes to cater to all reading tastes.

Now in its fifth edition, the cultural event, run under the patronage of Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, will see the participation of 400 Saudi, Arab and international publishing houses from 40 different countries.

Jeddah Gov. Prince Mishaal bin Majed, who is head of the fair’s supreme committee, has been coordinating the organization of the event which will include book-signing sessions by 200 authors.

The exhibition, occupying 30,000 square meters, is one of the biggest specialized expos in the Kingdom, and aims to promote reading and the cultural environment.

The fair will also include a program of seminars, lectures and indoor and outdoor theater productions, along with documentary films for families and children, and workshops in visual arts, photography and Arabic calligraphy.

The Jeddah fair is supported by Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan Al-Saud, who believes it reflects the city’s culture and traditions, along with backing from Minister of Media Turki Al-Shabanah. SPA Jeddah