20-year limit for expat doctors in S. Arabia: New rule to affect thousands http://www.dawn. com/2007/ 09/24/top8. htm By Our Correspondent
RIYADH, Sept 23: Senior Pakistani and other expatriate doctors working in Saudi hospitals for more than 20 years now would have to leave the kingdom after the expiry of their current contract.
The health ministry has banned foreign doctors who have completed more than 20 years service in the kingdom from practicing the profession (any further), reported Saudi newspaper Al-Jazirah quoting a decision of the Saudi health ministry.
The ban could mean a large number of doctors who came here in the 70s and 80s would have to leave the country for good at the twilight of their careers. Many such
doctors came from Pakistan and India.
At present, there are more than 43,000 doctors in the kingdom and about 78 per cent of them are expatriates.
However, a proposal has also been made that in case heath departments in a city or region still require the services of any such doctor; they would need
to obtain permission from
the assistant deputy minister for human resource development before renewing any such contract.
The new decision aims at creating job opportunities for qualified Saudi doctors.
Many Saudi doctors have returned to the kingdom after completing higher
studies in foreign countries.
The ministry of health runs nearly 200 hospitals in addition to over 2,000 primary health care centres.
The announcement barring the renewal of contracts of expatriate doctors serving for more than decades came as plans were underway to transform government hospitals into public corporations in order to operate them commercially and improve health services.
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