The world has faced, during progress and development, many challenges in different fields including the health sector. Scientists and researchers have persevered to find effective treatments for many chronic and serious diseases.
The percentage of Saudi local expenditure in the Health sector is estimated to be 35%, whereas expenditure on imports was estimated to be 65%. Improving the health sector will contribute to reducing SAR 400 billion over the next five years. Through the National Transformation Program 2020, KACST has provided an initiative to localize and develop technology within the sectors that have large local expenditure. This initiative includes the localization and transfer of health technology to support and enhance the local content in this sector with the aim of reducing health care costs and training and qualifying national human resources specialized in health-related fields.
The health initiative consists of a group of specialized technical projects as follows:
- The Saudi Human Genome, which is a personalized and preventive medicine that aims to reduce health care costs using genome technology. This project depends on the localization and transfer of the Next Generation Sequencing that detects and determines mutations causing inherited diseases in the Saudi population.
- Localization and development of a technical platform to detect infectious diseases. This project aims to establish a national database for infectious diseases in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, that will contribute to the detection and control of infectious diseases.
- Localization and development of Nanomedicine that aims to localize the manufacturing of Nano-particles that can contribute to the study of diseases and treatment.
- Localization and development of stem cell technology that aims to localize modern stem cell technologies to treat and control the common chronic diseases in the Kingdom.