MOH News
Al-Falih Inspects Hospitals and Health Centers at the Holy Site of Arafat
20 September 2015
His Excellency the Minister of Health, Eng. Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al-Falih, has reiterated that his tour of health facilities at the Holy Site of Arafat comes as part of the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) ongoing efforts throughout the year, not only in the Hajj season.

After inspecting on Sunday the hospitals and primary healthcare centers in Arafat to check on their readiness for providing medical care for pilgrims, Eng. Al-Falih said, “This tour is not associated with the Hajj season as the heavy workload is done before the arrival of pilgrims to the holy sites in Mina, Arafat and Muzdalifah. Thanks to Allah, what I saw today on the ground proves that all health facilities and equipment will be fully ready to serve pilgrims as they now already do.”

He added that nearly 25,000 of the MOH’s medical and technical cadres from all Saudi regions were assigned this year to serve pilgrims, a large number of them were sent to Makkah and the other Holy Sites, while the others were seconded to Madinah, which is visited by many pilgrims before and after the Hajj season.

He went on saying, “The chain of medical supplies is integrated, and the link between the MOH and other governmental institutions, whether those providing medical services such as medical cities or military hospitals, the National Guard, the Red Crescent, as well as the air and ground ambulance, is integrated as well.” “In fact, there is full coordination to that effect,” Eng. Al-Falih said, noting that the system of health services in Saudi Arabia comes under the supervision of the Ministry of Health in coordination with other bodies.

“After what I saw on my tour today, I am confident that the system of health services operates in a professional and accurate way and it is fully ready to deal with any circumstances in light of the large number of pilgrims who gather in just one place, a matter which cannot be seen in any part of the world,” Al-Falih said, adding that this achievement is expected from Saudi Arabia, as well as its government and Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, May Allah protect him, who ordered all the state bodies, not only the MOH, to harness all efforts, resources and human cadres to serve pilgrims. 

“As usual,” according to Al-Falih, “the MOH stands as a main and effective partner in this integrated health system, alongside the Saudi people, who welcome pilgrims every year with open arms and eagerness to provide them with health services.”

“I hope that there is no need to use all such centers in the Hajj season,” he said, stressing that the MOH is fully ready to deal with any circumstances. “Of course, many pilgrims will be in need of medical services and we hope that their health conditions will not be serious,” Al-Falih said. Speaking about the expected high temperature in the Hajj season, Eng. Al-Falih said that there is a gradual increase in temperature every year, reiterating that the MOH’s health facilities are ready to receive cases of heat exhaustion and sunstroke this year.

Speaking about the MOH’s plan to face Coronavirus and sunstroke cases in the Hajj season, Eng. Al-Falih said, “The health system used in Saudi Arabia is greatly advanced, thanks to Allah, as it depends on prevention and infection control in case of emergencies. “As for sunstroke,” he said, “the MOH has launched a comprehensive awareness campaign worldwide for expatriate pilgrims before their arrival in Saudi Arabia, in addition to awareness campaigns at the air, land and sea entry ports. The same thing was done for Saudi pilgrims.”

Eng. Al-Falih added, “Here in Saudi Arabia, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, Mohamed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, has directed Holy Makkah Municipality to increase the number of water spray air-cooling fans at the Holy Sites. The Kingdom has also continued to install awnings and plant tress to decrease the number of sunstroke and heat exhaustion cases.”

He reiterated that the MOH’s hospitals in Makkah and Mina are equipped with special rooms and equipment to treat cases of sunstroke and heat exhaustion in a creative manner, developed by the MOH to be used in the Holy Sites.

As for Coronavirus, Eng. Al-Falih said, “As everybody knows, the MOH has worked in full swing with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other international organizations, in addition to a medical team from different Saudi research and scientific bodies, to wipe out this virus, which emerged a few years ago.”

He added, “We are still in the phase of research and investigation to discover a medicine for this virus and our target is to stop the spread of the virus as much as possible. As all know, an outbreak of the virus was reported in Riyadh two months ago or less, but we managed, thanks to Allah, to control the situation and decrease the number of infected cases.”

“It is a matter of our pride that we succeeded in preventing any pilgrim with Coronavirus from entering Makkah, Madinah and other Holy Sites so far,” Eng. Al-Falih said, adding that it will take a few days to finally announce the MOH’s ability to prevent Coronavirus cases from reaching the Holy Sites.

Meanwhile, Eng. Al-Falih praised efforts and cooperation of everyone, whether that of the MOH or other sectors, including the Interior Ministry which collaborated with the MOH to prevent persons in contact with confirmed cases of Coronavirus from performing pilgrimage this year. He further thanked the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs for their strenuous efforts to prevent camels and contacts of Coronavirus cases from reaching the Holy Sites. It has not escaped Eng. Al-Falih’s notice to thank the MOH employees, who examined every passenger at the entry ports of the Holy Sites to prevent any Coronavirus outbreak in the Hajj season.

Eng. Al-Falih toured the East Arafat Hospital, Jabal al-Rahma Hospital, Arafat General Hospital, Namira Hospital and a number of health centers and drug depots, where he inspected intensive care units, rooms of isolation, sunstroke and heat exhaustion, and laboratories.

It is worth mentioning that His Excellency the Vice Minister of Health, Mr. Hamad al-Duweila, and a number of the MOH’s senior leaders accompanied Eng. Al-Falih on his inspection visit.

 



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