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KUWAIT CITY, Dec 27: With the increase in the fees for visiting clinics and obtaining medicines to KD 7 starting from last week, the number of expatriates seeking treatment started declining. A number of health centers recorded a decline of about 85 percent in areas inhabited by a large segment of expatriates.
In the context, informed health sources explained that daily visits to some health centers on Monday did not exceed 150 visits. This is a sharp decline compared to the average rate of visits to these centers, which ranged between 1,000 and 1,200 visits per day before the fee increase. Meanwhile, Director of the Mubarak Al- Kabeer Health Zone Dr. Walid Al-Busairi affirmed in a press statement that the area “was not affected by the decision to increase fees for medicines for expatriates”. He indicated that it differs in Farwaniya, Hawally, Ahmadi and Jahra areas that provide health services to expatriates.
Dr. Al-Busairi said, “Primary health care centers in Mubarak Al-Kabeer area cover domestic workers. Therefore, it is not greatly affected by the decision to increase fees, given that these categories are exempted from them. The percentage of the cost of medicines in the Ministry of Health compared to the value paid ranges between 10 and 25 percent. If it is compared to the purchase value of the same medicine from outside the ministry, we will find that it is very low.” By Marwa Al-Bahrawi Al-Seyassah/ Arab Times Staff