The healthcare system in Saudi Arabia has shifted to provide for a rapidly growing population. With approximately 26 million residents, the Ministry of Health and other organizations must constantly work to provide quality healthcare for its people. International students studying in Saudi Arabia can be sure that if they happen to become sick or injured during their stay, healthcare in Saudi Arabia will be sufficient to provide them with quality and efficient care.
The Ministry of Health is the major government provider of healthcare services in Saudi Arabia. It provides healthcare services at the primary level, the secondary level, and the tertiary level. More than 240 hospitals and 2,000 primary healthcare centers represent 60 percent of the health services in Saudi Arabia. The quality of the public healthcare has increased significantly over the years. This has caused private healthcare providers to increase their quality, as well, and the private sector has expanded over the past decade.
With approximately 2,000 primary healthcare centers across the country, more than 200 have adopted a referral system. This system combines with the primary care network and specialist curative services to cover all citizens. Because a number of private hospitals and clinics employ British and American doctors and nursing staff, healthcare in Saudi Arabia is similar to healthcare found in Europe or the United States. Though most medicines, both prescription and over-the-counter, are available in pharmacies in Saudi Arabia, international students are encouraged to bring needed medication, just in case that medicine cannot be found in Saudi Arabia.
Medical treatment in Saudi Arabia is given at many of the quality medical facilities in the country. Rarely do international students feel the need to travel overseas for treatment, though that option may be necessary depending on the health insurance provided. Medical technology is constantly being upgraded in Saudi Arabia and doctors, nurses and other medical professionals are being trained in facilities designed specifically for that purpose. Medical treatment in Saudi Arabia can range from simple care and attention to more specialized forms of treatment such as open-heart surgery, kidney transplants, cancer therapy and more. The King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital is one of the world's largest eye hospitals; since Saudi Arabia is the largest country in the Middle East, it provides for approximately 50 percent of the medical treatment for its region. Saudi Arabia was also ranked 26 in the world for medical treatment by the World Health Organization's global evaluation.
The healthcare system in Saudi Arabia continues to grow in quality, effort and efficiency. With medical treatment in Saudi Arabia ranging from broad to specialized forms and the healthcare in Saudi Arabia being available to everyone, rarely do international students find that they have to leave the country to receive proper treatment. International students who decide to study in Saudi Arabia can trust the healthcare system in Saudi Arabia to keep them well during their stay.