The first such collaboration in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was formed as an affiliation with King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital (KKESH) in Riyadh in 2010. This was to help KKESH train a new generation of leaders in ophthalmology to treat the people of Saudi Arabia and neighboring Gulf countries. The second collaboration was when Johns Hopkins Medicine (JHM) signed a health care joint venture with Saudi Aramco, in 2014. The resulting independent company, Johns Hopkins Aramco Healthcare (JHAH), is truly unique in terms of its scope and impact.
As part of the Joint Venture, Johns Hopkins Medicine and Saudi Aramco both have an indirect ownership interest in the Saudi-registered company JHAH. The purpose of the agreement is to provide medical services to Saudi Aramco’s approximately 360,000 employees and dependents, education for its clinicians and other health care professionals and opportunities for research collaborations.
The main JHAH hospital, located in Dhahran, is a state-of-the-art, 330-bed referral institution that has five intensive care units (cardiac, medical, surgical, pediatric and neonatal) in addition to numerous step-down units. JHAH also operates health centers in Abqaiq, al Hasa, Ras Tanura and ‘Udhailiyah. JHAH works with a network of more than 80 medical providers contracting with primary, secondary and tertiary facilities Kingdom-wide. Additionally, JHAH operates remote area clinics, providing around-the-clock emergency medical support to Saudi Aramco operations. JHAH employs 5,200 people - 3,000 Saudi Aramco employees seconded to JHAH, 600 JHAH direct hires and 1,600 contracted employees.
The affiliation with KKESH brought together two institutions that are both world leaders in treating and curing eye disease. The Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins is an internationally renowned eye institution that diagnoses and manages complex medical and surgical eye disease and serves as a preeminent eye care provider. With 250 beds, KKESH is the largest ophthalmic tertiary referral center in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The goal of the affiliation is to combine Johns Hopkins’ medical expertise and KKESH’s huge volume of eye patients to develop treatments for eye diseases that afflict patients living in both countries and around the world.