RIYADH: March 30, 2020 (TNS): King Salman has ordered free treatment be provided to all coronavirus patients in all government and private health facilities in Saudi Arabia.
The Kingdom’s health minister, Dr. Tawfiq bin Fawzan Al-Rabiah, announced the king’s order at a press conference in Riyadh on Monday and said it included citizens and residents – even those in violation of residency laws.
In accordance with a royal order from His Majesty King Salman, #Saudi Minister of Health says all citizens and residents in the kingdom – including those in violation of residency laws- will receive Coronavirus related medical care free of charge. https://t.co/7htIcP3cwo
— Fahad Nazer فهد ناظر (@KSAEmbassySpox) March 30, 2020
Al-Rabiah said the royal order was borne out of the king’s keenness to put the health of citizens and residents first and to ensure the safety of all.
The number of virus victims in Saudi Arabia reached 1,453 on Monday, with 8 confirmed deaths and 115 recoveries.
The president of the Saudi Human Rights Commission, Awwad bin Saleh Al-Awwad, thanked King Salman for the directive.
“This reflects the human and moral approach the Kingdom is adopting in dealing with this pandemic,” he said, adding that Saudi Arabia “is keen to ensure that patients receive the necessary treatment according to the highest medical standards without discrimination.”
He added: “This gives the most striking example in preserving human rights and dignity as everyone, whether citizen or resident, should enjoy health and safety, including violators of the residency system.”
This move, he said, clearly reflects the Kingdom’s approach based on respecting and promoting human rights on the ground.
“This shows that the most valuable asset for Saudi Arabia is the human being, thereby guaranteeing a decent and healthy living, the foremost right of everyone.”