Saudi Council-Licensed

Posted by Abdel Kadz on Thursday, March 17, 2011 with No comments
One of my youngest siblings, one because she’s the other half of a set of twins, was constantly worrying about the examination she was to take in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. She kept gnawing at the notion of finally sitting in and successfully passing the examinations that it became a regular “status update” on her Facebook account. I always consoled her that, unlike the nursing board exams or any licensure examinations in the country for that matter, the one she was about to take was fairly easy because it was not as extensive, without the questions reaching the 600 mark as she may have been accustomed to when she had the local boards. The passing percentage from what I know (and this needs to be verified though) is as low as 50 percent, so the probability of passing the exam was pretty high unless the questions were alien to her or she instantly succumbed to a mental breakdown in the process, pun intended. The examinations in question are the ones given by the Saudi Commission for Health Specialties, commonly referred to as the Saudi Council, much like the Professional Regulation Commission only centered on the medical profession. The exams can be computer- or paper-based and be anything under the sun, as far as the questions go, but still within the confines of the discipline one belongs to. And passing the Saudi Council meant, no brainer here, that you can legally practice your profession anywhere in the Kingdom. My sister, about 17 hours ago, status-updated her Facebook to read Alhamdullilah (all praise is due to Allah). That meant, no brainer here too, that 17 hours ago, she just became Saudi Council-licensed.

You’d likely wonder if I am in the position to give unsolicited advice to her. My answer to that is a resounding yes because I, too, is Saudi Council-licensed. I sat for the exams in 2009 when I landed a contractual job as a physical therapist for a tertiary hospital in the Industrial City of Jubail, situated in the southeastern part of Saudi Arabia. Like her, I, too, gnawed at the idea of sitting in and passing the exams. I had my Saudi Council licensure at our hospital’s main branch, in Dammam, about an hour from where my hospital was so I had about sixty grueling minutes on a pick-up, with an Indian driver, racking my brains up for stock knowledge on physical therapy. No matter how religiously I burn the midnight candles to prepare for it, it wasn’t enough because the examination was, as mentioned earlier, anything under the sun. Imagine the whole of physical therapy crammed in 60 questions only!

Well, I came out of the exams alive, minus the mental breakdown. The questions were not alien to me too. Either you have the answers stocked up and Dewey decimal-ed in the crevices of your brain or not was the key to passing the Saudi Council. And all I needed was to get half of the 60 questions to a T to be able to practice physical therapy legally. My exam certificates are reminders of that rather interesting experience. Too bad I was not a Facebook addict at that time, like my sister is now, and did not status-update it for my “friends” to see and read. But I Tweeted it, about two years ago, instead.
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