Last week, the Saudi authorities announced the creation of a new national health institute to facilitate medical research and clinical trials. “Research will add value by transforming results into health and economic benefits to improve the quality of life,” said Saudi Health Minister Fahd Al-Jalajel.
Indeed, the main objective of this new institute is to promote the value of translational research - the reciprocal transfer of knowledge from research carried out in the laboratory to the one applied at the patient's bedside - which has a crucial role to play in transforming the country's health sector.
In addition, the institute will contribute to the prevention of health risks, in line with the objectives set by the Vision 2030 and Health Sector Transformation programmes. These two projects, which include the objective of providing quality healthcare for all, aim to fundamentally reform the Saudi economy and society, transforming the Kingdom from an oil state to a productive economy based on industrial manufacturing.
According to data from Business France, the Saudi government has already increased its health budget by 10.5 % compared to 2017, accounting for 15 % of the total budget at USD 32.9bn. Although dependent on foreign supply, this market represents the third largest item of government expenditure.
دعماً لتمكين الأبحاث وتطبيق نتائجها في الحفاظ على صحة الإنسان ورفع مستوى الخدمات الصحية في المملكة، صدرت موافقة مجلس الوزراء على إنشاء #المعهد_الوطني_لأبحاث_الصحة والذي سيسهم في دعم العلماء والباحثين، وتعزيز الأمن الصحي، وجذب الاستثمارات الصحية، وخلق بيئة بحثية صحية متطورة في… https://t.co/KLavlo9Zyu— فهد الجلاجل (@FahadAlJalajel) August 15, 2023
Fahd Al-Jalajel also stated that the National Institute of Health will prioritise healthcare needs, so that patients and healthcare providers can benefit from better care. Research findings will be used to help improve health standards.
This new organisation will help to increase national income by developing locally manufactured products for prevention, diagnosis and treatment. In particular, it will help pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers to develop innovative new products. This strategy will reduce overall healthcare costs by attracting global investors and raising funds for research.
The Saudi Minister of Health also stated that this project will be supported by the creation of other centres to support the Research Institute, such as the Saudi Patient Safety Centre, the National Public Health Laboratory and the National Centre for Health Emergency Operations.
“The institute is seen as one of the initiatives in the health sector transformation programme, as this decision completes the health transformation journey that began with the launch of Saudi Vision 2030,” said Al-Jalajel.