Medical stations and specialised hospitals near pilgrimage sites aim to prevent tragedy and keep pilgrims disease-free
JEDDAH, August 23, 2018 – Saudi Arabia’s Health Committee, the government agency responsible for dealing with the health issues of more than 2.37 million Muslims from around the world who performed Hajj, has announced details related to its massive effort to keep pilgrims healthy and disease free.
The Minister of Health, Dr Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah, said that the Hajj season was free of any epidemics or public-health emergency.
He said that this year the ministry focused on three main areas in its Hajj health plan: heat strokes, communicable diseases and compliance with the directives of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah regarding transfer plans and crowd management.
He pointed out that before the start of the pilgrimage season, the ministry carried out intensive training for health workers. He clarified that during the past different platforms.
Procedures and facilities developed and implemented by the Health Committee are on par with the healthcare infrastructure of a city with a population equal to the number pilgrims expected during Hajj. The facilities include medical centres located near the holy sites, as well as the provision of a mobile training vehicles to offer flexibility in the face of a remote medical emergency.
For this year’s Hajj season, the Health Committee had prepared several hospitals and health centres in Makkah and Madinah, as well as at all relevant holy sites. The committee set up 25 hospitals, 155 health centres, and deployed more than 30,000 doctors and health-care professionals and 180 ambulances.
Four emergency care hospitals were established in Makkah’s Mina community, the area where pilgrims engage in the symbolic stoning of the devil.
Mina Emergency Hospital is equipped with 138 beds and an additional 34 emergency stretcher beds. Mina Aljaser Hospital has a 152-bed capacity with 28 emergency stretcher beds. Mina Al Wadi Hospital, also in Makkah, has 158 beds and 25 emergency stretcher beds. The Mina Hospital Shara Jadid has 50 beds and 16 emergency stretcher beds. All the hospitals have emergency units and are staffed by surgeons and specialists in gastroenterology and cardiology. The hospitals also have operating rooms, neurosurgery facilities, urinary tract treatment capabilities.
There is also a mobile field hospital located in Arafat to the north of Namirah Mosque, staffed by 15 doctors and 15 nurses. The hospital has eight beds, three of which are meant for intensive care and five for less severe cases.
The Health Committee also provided four trucks filled with emergency medicines and medical binders.
More than 1.6 million pilgrims have been examined at the health gates, over 350,000 Polio vaccines administered. In addition, 480,000 seasonal flu and meningococcemia shots were administered on pilgrims. The health facilities have carried out 579 cardiac catheterisations, 36 open-heart surgeries, 2,056 kidney dialysis session, 181 gastrointestinal endoscopies and 12 deliveries.
Officials also introduced a Mobile Training course for medical personnel and support workers. Training for health practitioners was carried out at Mina Al Wadi Hospital.