‘Around 58,000 Libyans came to Jordan since last February’

by Khetam Malkawi | Feb 29,2012 | 22:36
AMMAN — The total number of Libyans who have entered the Kingdom since last February stands at 58,000 as of this week, a Libyan official said on Wednesday.

Ali Bin Jalil, head of the Libyan Medical Committee in Jordan, said that of the total, approximately 48,000 came for medical treatment, while the rest came for other purposes including tourism.

He noted that the total cost of treating Libyan patients in Jordan until the end of January reached $80 million, and “we have paid $30 million of these outstanding dues”.

In a joint press conference with the Private Hospitals Association (PHA), Bin Jalil said the delay in paying the bills is related to several factors, including giving priority to paying for hotel accommodation and rent for apartments, in addition to per diems for patients.

“Libyans are staying in 172 hotels and apartments in Amman, Irbid and the Dead Sea,” the committee chief said.

He also noted that there have been delays in sending invoices to the committee.

“Hospitals sometimes send the bills late and this results in delaying the payments,” Bin Jalil explained.

Speaking at the conference, Abdul Salam Darwish, the committee’s vice president, noted that his government has “promised to transfer 50 per cent of the value of the outstanding bills in the next few days to pay part of our debts to hospitals”.

Meanwhile, PHA President Awni Bashir noted that number of Libyan patients arriving in the Kingdom is decreasing.

“Every day, around 1,000 Libyans used to arrive in Jordan for treatment,” he said, adding that since the Libyan government imposed regulations on sending patients to Jordan, “the number decreased, and we currently receive around 40 patients a day”.

Of the Libyans who came for treatment in Jordan, only 8,000 were wounded in the North African country’s recent revolution, while the rest came for treatment for different diseases, according to Bashir.

He noted that 7,000 families had in vitro fertilisation procedures, adding that there were also high numbers of cancer patients and diabetics.

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NOTE BY THE EDITOR: Did you notice? The Libyan Government is paying for all bills, hospitals, apartments, hotels. …

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