Hospitals in Abu Dhabi recorded an increase of around 30 per cent in applications by patients for sick leaves ahead of Eid Al Fitr holidays, compared with normal days, according to the Arabic language daily ‘Al Khaleej’.
The paper, quoting doctors at local hospitals, said most of those cases do not necessitate sick leaves and that patients just wanted to have a longer Eid break.
While some doctors refused to give sick leaves, many others violated the rules and granted leaves to maximise revenue for their hospitals, the paper said.
“The health ministry and most hospitals have an electronic system to control sick leaves, but there were violations before Eid Al Fitr,” the paper said.
“Records in many hospitals in Abu Dhabi showed there was an increase of nearly 30 per cent in requests by patients for sick leaves and that most of those cases did not necessitate a leave.
“Yet, many doctors granted leaves with the aim of maximising revenue by attracting more patients to their hospitals and clinics.”
The paper quoted Dr Mazin Al Assadi, a digestive diseases consultant at a local hospital, as saying there was a “big increase” in patients requesting sick leaves.
“Some patients visit more than one hospital to get a longer leave. Unfortunately, some doctors either sympathise with these patients or just give sick leaves to attract more patients to their clinics and make more money,” he said.