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Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation
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Year : 2001  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 293-304
Dialysis Centers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Muhammad Ziad Souqiyyeh
Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation, P.O. Box 27049, Riyadh 11417
Saudi Arabia
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PMID: 18209376

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To help future planning of the dialysis services in the different geographical regions and health sectors in Saudi Arabia, we surveyed its 130 active hemodialysis (HD) centers using a questionnaire about their manpower, hemodialysis equipment, as well as, peritoneal dialysis and transplant patients at the end of the year 2000. Almost all the dialysis centers were on hospital campus but of variable sizes with an average ratio of 14.8 dialysis machines per center (range 2-113 machines per center). The distribution of the dialysis centers according to the geographical regions of Saudi Arabia included 18(14%) in the northern, 25(19%) in the southern, 13(10%) in the eastern, 35(27%) in the western and 39(30%) in the central region. There was a total of 6,694 dialysis patients served on 1,918 hemodialysis machines. There were 1,793(93%) HD machines capable of performing bicarbonate dialysis. There was an average ratio of 3.5 patients per one HD machine. In addition to the hemodialysis, there were 28(22%) centers engaged in peritoneal dialysis (PD) and 56(43%) centers in the follow-up of post transplant patients. The total number of the nephrologists, regardless of their expertise was 212 of whom 180(84%) spoke Arabic; the average ratio was 32 patients per nephrologist (range of 14-58). There were 1320 hemodialysis nurses of whom only 465(35%) spoke Arabic. The average ratio of patients to nurses was five patients per nurse (range of 4-6). There were 72(55%) social workers and 70(54%)dietitians with average patients ratios to these supporting services of 1:93 patients (range of 1:58-137) and 1:96 patients (range of 1:53-137), respectively. The study HD patients had a mean age of 47.8 17.1 years (range: 2-92 years); of them, 52.5% were males and 12% had non-Saudi nationality. Of the hemodialysis patients, 1,815(27%) were diabetics. The calculated net increase of dialysis population was 988 patients per year (14.8%). There were 5,700(85%) patients on regular bicarbonate dialysate. Chronic viral infection were noted in more than half of all the dialysis population: thus 3,380(50%) were positive for hepatitis C viral (HCV) serology, 448(7%) had positive hepatitis B (HBV) antigenemia and six(0.1%) had the human acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. In conclusion, our findings demonstrated a satisfactory advancement achieved in many Saudi dialysis centers in terms of equipment, personnel and patients' care. However, there should be more emphasis in the future on quality care through better self-assessment of the performance of these centers.

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