By Saeed Al-Khotani
RIYADH — Minister of Health Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah on Saturday led celebrations marking the accreditation of nine Saudi hospitals by the US-based Joint Commission International (JCI).
“The ministry dedicates this outstanding achievement to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah and Crown Prince Naif, the Minister of Interior, for their constant guidance and support to the health sector, without which this achievement would not have been possible,” the minister said while addressing the participants.
“Six more hospitals are set to get the JCI accreditation by the end of this year. They are King Abdul Aziz Hospital in Jeddah, King Khaled Hospital in Najran, King Saud Hospital in Riyadh, King Fahd Hospital in Baha, King Fahd Hospital in Hofouf and Asir General Hospital,” he added.
Deputy health ministers Dr. Mansoor Al-Hawwasi and Dr Muhammad Khushaim, and Dr. Mustafa Al-Tayyan, representative of the World Health Organization in the Kingdom, senior ministry officials, heads of the accredited hospitals and media personnel were present on the occasion.
Dr. Khushaim in his address said each of these hospitals made the achievement after two years of concerted efforts and hard work to fulfill the accreditation requirements.
“The performance of these nine hospitals were evaluated against over 1200 criteria covering almost all domains of hospital work. These standards were met successfully and accordingly the accreditation was granted by this major healthcare accreditation agency. We can say that these hospitals will provide safe healthcare services according to the international standards,” he said.
WHO’s Al-Tayyan commended the Kingdom’s efforts to bring its healthcare facilities on a par with world class healthcare quality standards. He hoped that this would help the facilities to offer quality health services. “Annually, over 360 million operations carried out globally, and a large portion of malpractices related to these operations can be eliminated by enforcing simple measures, like hand washing and general hygiene in healthcare settings,” he added.
The newly accredited hospitals are King Fahd Medical City in Riyadh, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital in Riyadh, Ajyad Hospital in Makkah, Hira Hospital in Makkah, King Fahd Hospital in Jeddah, King Fahd Specialist Hospital in Dammam, Saud Al-Babtain Cardiac Center in Dammam, King Abdul Aziz Hospital in Taif and King Saud Hospital in Onaizah.
Dr. Khaled Mirghalani, Health Ministry spokesman, said 10 more hospitals in the Kingdom would be subjected to JCI evaluation in the foreseeable future.
The US-based accreditation agency has been working with health care organizations, ministries of health and global organizations in over 80 countries since 1994. So far, 450 public and private health care organizations in 50 countries have been accredited or certified by JCI.