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An examination of the mental health service provision in Saudi Arabia with particular reference to counselling

Almoshawah, Saad A.S.


Saad A.S. Almoshawah


D. I. (David Islwyn) Williams

Judith Irving


This thesis aimed at elucidating the meaning of mental health services within the context of counselling practice in Saudi Arabia. The delineation of mental health practice within this context may help to overcome the incongruence among counselling theory, research, practice, and the experience of counselling patients in that country.

Consequently, mental health treatment systems in Saudi Arabia have a history of incompatible philosophies and conflicts that have been associated with poor treatment outcomes for persons diagnosed, which was linked to a deterrent Poor Law to one which incorporated those suffering from a wide range of mental disturbances, which was largely based on treatment willingly undertaken and freely available, and which was associated with a preventive Ministry of Health. It examines the concepts and intentions which underlay policy, and the impact of policy upon the service and its clients. It describes the ways in which the service was moulded by the changing and sometimes conflicting demands of the needs of the mentally patients' and of society as a whole. There is almost full agreement among all those concerned with Psychiatric health care in Saudi Arabia that current treatment is not beneficial and may be harmful to the patients'. Most psychiatrists agree that the major benefit for the patient occur in the first week of his /her treatment. Mental health provision in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia hospitals, historical background and the use of the current medical model, is examined in the first part of the study and qualitative and quantitative methodology were used in the second part.

From the analysis, the questionnaire, and exploratory interviews the major findings were, revealed statistically significant differences between practitioners in their aims and objectives, roles and responsibilities, awareness, effectiveness' , referral system and procedures, and personal development. Although, practitioners experienced dissatisfaction with the whole service; patients' were raised the same issues criticising the poor standard of services in their hospitals. In addition, practitioners felt the referral system was inflexible and unclear, psychiatrists and counsellors failed to understand their patients' needs. It was concluded that there were considerable the lack of training amongst practitioners.

In the light of the findings, the researcher came up with several recommendations, the most important of which were the following. I ) there is a need for a viable model for mental health treatment in Saudi Arabia.;2) Improve the current provision regulation;3) establish a mental health Act in Saudi Arabia.


Almoshawah, S. A. (2005). An examination of the mental health service provision in Saudi Arabia with particular reference to counselling. (Thesis). University of Hull. Retrieved from

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Jan 6, 2015
Publicly Available Date Feb 23, 2023
Keywords Psychology
Public URL
Additional Information Department of Psychology, The University of Hull
Award Date Jul 1, 2005


Thesis (22.4 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 2005 Almoshawah, Saad A.S. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder.

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