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Health Ministry suffering from ‘brain drain’ — spokesperson

By JT - Feb 26,2019 - Last updated at Feb 26,2019

AMMAN — A lack of solutions to address severe shortages in medical personnel have resulted in the Health Ministry incurring JD120 million worth of debt, its spokesperson, Hatem Azrui, said on Tuesday.

Azrui said that the sum could have been used to improve the ministry’s services and the income of its personnel, so as to encourage people to stay in the sector and help address its “brain drain”, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

He added that the ministry is trying to improve the level of health services provided to citizens nationwide and employ a sufficient amount of medical, nursing and technical personnel.

The spokesperson noted that the ministry, as part of its executive plan to improve its services, has expanded residency programmes for various specialisations.

The ministry’s efforts have led to an increase in the number of doctors joining the programmes, Azrui said.

The spokesperson added that they have also begun holding the residency exam twice a year instead of once, to allow more doctors to join training courses in all medical specialisations.

He pointed out that more than 1,000 doctors sat for the exam to join the first course of the year, and Health Minister Ghazi Zaben announced the second course for July.

The spokesperson said that the ministry had trained large numbers of public-sector doctors who joined residency programmes, yet the majority of them did not commit to working at the ministry due to the weak legal status of their contracts.

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