Masters Thesis

Assessment of Saudi Arabia's healthcare system: a need to decentralize

In this study, information regarding the demographics, geography, and economy of Saudi Arabia is discussed to give overall background information about Saudi Arabia. The Saudi Arabian healthcare system and structure is discussed in more detail including a management theory that applies to the way it is structured. This study is a needs assessment or program evaluation study. The different types of program evaluation are explored and the type this study belongs to is identified. The sample frame of the study and how the information was obtained is stated, and the limitations of the study is discussed. The government structure and ideology in general is discussed in order to understand the general environment that the healthcare system is in. The main challenge of the Saudi Arabian healthcare system as a whole is that the major health services of the Ministry of Health (MOH) are located in a few free standing hospitals rather than spread out through the city and country by having smaller outpatient clinics to cover more area (Colliers). The MOH hospitals are not only centered in a few locations within the cities but are more abundant in the major cities of the Kingdom: Riyadh, Jeddah, and the eastern region cities. One of the main reasons for this is the divide and unwillingness of people to go from developed cities to less developed cities where many amenities are not available to the people. Saudi Arabian healthcare is also experiencing a shortage in healthcare resources including physicians, nurses, and healthcare facilities and equipment. Lastly, the challenges of the private sector of healthcare which comprises 20 percent of the total market are explored.

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