Filipino nurses have been serving Saudi Hospitals from last 30 years. Earlier in 1980’s when Saudi Arabia fell short of nurses and professional doctors, Filipino nurses started migrating from the Philippines for public and private health centers. In Saudi Arabia, male doctors and nurses can never visit the female area of health care and hospitals. For this reason, the need of female nurses is always at its peak in Saudi Arabia. On average 8,000 to 10,000 nurses migrate from the Philippines to Saudi Arabia every year. These nurses find it comfortable to work in Saudi Arabia as compared to any other western country.[irp]
Those countries require various examination tests and language courses (IELTS, TOEFL) which are difficult to clear. Job opportunities in Saudi Arabia don’t put any such requirement. In order to get registered, Saudi hospitals put the requirement of 2 years working experience in hospitals. Prometric exam has also to be passed in order to fulfill requirements of Saudi commission of Health specialties. This is the only requirement which these Filipino nurses have to fulfill.
There are various perks and benefits available to these nurses in return for employment in Saudi Arabia. These benefits are the biggest attractions for these nurses to work in Saudi Arabia. Salary of nurses is totally tax-free. According to the law of 1970’s being an expatriate, government taxes are waived for such individuals. Beside this prerequisite, citizenship is totally banned for such individuals no matter how much time they have spent in Saudi Arabia. Being an expatriate they are never entitled to free education, free medical treatment or right to buy property.[irp]
Filipino nurses have to take residence visa, known as Iqama. The fee for Iqama has to be paid by Employer Company of nurses. In case it is not paid through proper channel, there is a complaint center in Philippines consulate in order to report for such incidents. Housing and transportation facility is free for such employees in Saudi Arabia. Houses available for nurses are totally furnished and equipped in all manners. Latest gadgets are available in these houses ranging from an electric stove to air conditioner. Besides houses, transportation is also free for such workers. This facility saves 10 to 20 Riyals for visiting malls and markets. The crime rate is also very low in Saudi Arabia this gives a sense of security to expatriates.[irp]
This is not the end of the story, health insurance is also free for nurses that cover medical insurance, consultation fee, hospital charges and diagnostic fees. The technology available in hospitals is also according to western hospitals. Nurses who have work experience in modern hospitals of Philippines can easily adjust in Saudi Arabia due to the same environment. Otherwise, they would have to take training sessions for these hospitals. Besides training facility, Gasoline and car facility is also very cheap for such individuals.[irp]
Being major exporter of oil in the world, Saudi Arabia offers very low rate for gasoline. Moreover, for cars, loans are available on lenient conditions. Bank loans are offered on very low-interest rate and there are so many other facilities available for such nurses in Saudi Arabia like cheap communication sources, free Arabic language courses and several other facilities related to convenient survival in Saudi Arabia.