King Salman orders treatment for all, including visa violators

WHO chief lauds Saudi Arabia's leadership in fight against coronavirus

March 30, 2020

Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH — Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman has ordered coronavirus treatment to be available, free of charge, for all citizens and expatriates in need of medical care, including people who have overstayed their visas in the Kingdom, Minister of Health Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said on Monday.

King Salman's magnanimous gesture caught the attention of the World Health Organization chief who lauded it in a tweet.

"This is what #HealthForAll means! Thank you so much @KingSalman for your leadership and commitment to ensure everyone has access to the health services needed to fight #COVID19. I hope other countries will follow your lead! Solidarity!" Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the WHO, tweeted.

Addressing a press conference here, Al-Rabiah urged all of those showing symptoms of coronavirus not to hesitate in going to a hospital, whether private or public, to get tested and receive the proper treatment under King Salman’s new order.

This includes residency visa violators, who should not legally be in the country, and they will not face any legal consequences, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported quoting Al-Rabiah as saying.

The minister emphasized the need to follow all precautionary measures to avoid contracting the virus.

“The government of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques is keen on the safety of all, and anyone who has symptoms should not hesitate to go to any medical facility to get detection and treatment in case of infected with the virus,” he said.

Al-Rabiah noted that coronavirus poses enormous challenges. “We have seen how advanced countries, which have expertise, suffer from the challenges posed by the virus, and it is difficult to predict what will happen in future due to the virus, and that depends on everyone’s cooperation and commitment.

We are in one vehicle, and adherence to instructions helps us control the virus, but it cannot be said that it is now under control,” the minister said.

“The Ministry of Health and all other sectors are still working hard to ensure everybody’s safety, and I appeal once again that everyone must comply with health instructions,” he said while highlighting the tremendous job done by many government sectors, especially the Ministry of Interior, in implementing “staying at homes” instructions for the safety of all.

Al-Rabiah specially thanked Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman for his great leadership role for all the efforts aimed to curb the spread of coronavirus.

“I would like to say that this harmony and distinguished work among all is led by a unique leader who works tirelessly and without boredom for the safety of the citizens, he is none other than Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman.

The Crown Prince follows everything related to this pandemic day and night to ensure the safety of everyone, and follows all the reports and precautions.

The Crown Prince is very interested in it because he believes that everyone should give the highest priority to his health and safety, and hence the state has never hesitated to take utmost precautions before the outbreak of the virus in the Kingdom,” he said while noting that “the measures have contributed to preventing the acceleration of coronavirus infections in the Kingdom as we have seen in other countries.”
Al-Rabiah said that so far no vaccine has been discovered to treat the coronavirus.

March 30, 2020
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