Health care is a right, not a privilege for Saudi citizens

March 22, 2010

Article 31 of the Basic Law of Governance (1 March 1992) states that “The State shall look after public health and provide health care for every citizen.”

Patient Rights

The Saudi Ministry of Health is entrusted with verifying that every patient finds easily and conveniently the basic health services he needs prior to care provision, during it, and afterwards. Some of such basic services are hereunder enlisted:
1- Patient must be provided a combination of health care services that meet the requirements of his health situation.
2- He must be treated in a humanly and good manner.
3- Care must be taken not to uncover his private parts unless his case necessitates.
4- Patient shall have the right to obtain full information about his case.
5- Patient shall have the right to know the name of the physician, his field of specialization, and ways of contact.
6- Patient shall have the right to review the treatment plan and discuss the alternatives and the complications as well as the risks involved.
7- Patient shall have the right to obtain continuous care and be transferred to other levels of care provision if necessary.
8- Patient's prior approval, based on his knowledge or the knowledge of his relatives, must be taken prior to performing any operation or anesthesia, unless a case of emergency or accident requires prompt medical intervention.
9- All information regarding the patient must be kept confidential and except in cases under judiciary follow up, they must not be disclosed unless as per the patient's prior approval.
10- Patient may raise verbal or written complaints, or submit proposals to the management of the health facility or MOH, without that affecting the quality of service provided to him.
11- He may refuse to meet any person having no relation with care provision, including visitors.
12- Patient must be informed of the cost of the health care provided in advance (if any).
13- Patient shall have the right to seek another medical consultation if he wishes. The care provider may suggest the suitable medical consultant considered to be suitable according to the case.
14- Patient shall have the right to obtain a report on his case, including the exact results of medical checkups.

Source: Ministry of Health

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