Private hospitals refuse to treat children at night

Updated 14 April 2016

Private hospitals refuse to treat children at night

JEDDAH: Several private hospitals in the Eastern Province have been refusing to treat children at night, according to a report in local media on Thursday.
However, the Health Ministry has warned that private hospitals are not allowed to refuse treatment. Essam Tawfeeq, spokesman of the ministry, said that several circulars were issued that compel hospitals to treat people seven days a week.
“All private hospitals must provide emergency physicians on week days and weekends. If a hospital has not complied with these instructions the ministry must be informed to take the necessary action,” he was quoted as saying.
Mohammad Al-Sadah, medical director of a private hospital, said there were hospitals not providing treatment on weekends because they do not have pediatricians on duty. Others only start providing emergency treatment for children from 12 midnight, he said.
He said this means that treatment provided is limited, causing problems for the children and their parents. “If a child has a fever we can only administer treatment for this. Other diagnostic or treatment procedures can only be provided in the presence of a pediatrician,” he said.
Al-Sadah said hospitals would not provide treatment without pediatricians because of the danger of incorrect diagnoses. He said sometimes hospitals have only one pediatrician on duty forcing parents to wait for many hours. This forces them to go to government hospitals or other private hospitals where treatment is provided from 12 midnight. “Expats often face these problems because they are not allowed treatment at the hospitals of the health ministry,” he said.
Meanwhile, a woman pediatrician said many emergency departments at private hospitals have stopped treating children following the appearance of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus and other infectious diseases. Medical personnel are unable to diagnose what virus is present and whether the child should be isolated.
“There has been a circular issued that obliges pediatricians to be on call if a child comes in suffering from high fever or other symptoms that require the intervention of a specialist, except for Fridays. Doctors in emergency departments are not authorized to treat children under 10 years of age,” she said.


Saudi Arabia among top 10 in UN’s e-commerce index

Updated 09 December 2019

Saudi Arabia among top 10 in UN’s e-commerce index

  • The index ranked the Kingdom 49th in the global ranking

RIYADH: The UN e-commerce index ranked Saudi Arabia among the top 10 countries in the e-commerce sector. 

The index, issued by the UN Conference on Trade and Development, ranked the Kingdom 49th in the global ranking, rising three places in the general index.

The report indicated that the improvement achieved by the Kingdom came from two criteria: The proportion of Internet use — which has risen to 93 percent — and the rising postal reliability standard.

Saudi Minister of Communications and Information Technology Abdullah bin Amer Al-Sawaha said that this achievement came as a result of unlimited support from the leadership.

He added that the ministry works with partners to develop the Kingdom’s digital capabilities to invest in the growth of future projects in order to achieve the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 reform plans.