Doctors and nurses in a makeshift ICU unit set up by Bahrian authorities to treat patients with coronavirus (COVID-19). Image Credit: Reuters

Cairo: Bahrain has employed 630 foreign health workers to help fight COVID-19 since the global pandemic began, the country’s Health Minister Faeqa Al Saleh has said.

The employees have been temporarily hired in different medical and nursing specialties as well as in support professions, she added.

“Their employment on a temporary basis comes to confront repercussions of the pandemic and the need of health institutions in the Kingdom of Bahrain for a rapid response to the crisis management and to cover a shortage in some medical specialties such as the intensive care unit, emergency and contagious diseases,” Al Saleh added, answering a parliamentary question.

Administrative jobs

The minister pointed out that no foreigner has been appointed in administrative jobs in the Health Ministry since the outbreak of the pandemic.

“The ministry constantly works to implement Bahrainisation of jobs, giving priority to employment of Bahraini citizens and qualifying them to replace foreign employees,” she said.

More than 400 Bahraini nursing graduates have been employed since 2019, according to the minister.

Like other Gulf countries, Bahrain has recently stepped up efforts to limit employment of migrant workers to create jobs for their citizens and cushion economic fallout from the pandemic.