Healthcare has always played a key role in protecting the health and lives of the population and, even more so, during a time of crisis like the ongoing pandemic of the COVID-19 coronavirus disease. The challenges healthcare systems around the world are facing right now are multiple, and it takes effective and compassionate care to meet the needs of the patients. Hamad Medical Corporation introduces a unique health care model, with free services for all, including free cancer treatment for Qatar's residents.
Hamad Medical Corporation
The Hamad Medical Corporation is a non-profit healthcare provider. It is considered to be one of the most accredited hospital providers in the Middle East and worldwide, offering secondary and tertiary healthcare through a network of 12 hospitals and home healthcare services while it manages the National Ambulance Service.
The HMC offers quality, state-of-the-art technology, and world-class facilities to the population of Qatar. As H.E. Dr. Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari, the Minister of Health and Managing Director of Hamad Medical Corporation, said, "Good health is central to a productive and fulfilling life. As the main provider of specialist healthcare services in Qatar, Hamad has had an enormous impact on the lives of the nation's population."
Qatar Ranks 5th for Health in World
According to Legatum Institute, a London-based think tank, Qatar ranks 5th in the world for health. The study included countries’ performance in three areas; basic health outcomes, health infrastructure and preventative care, and physical and mental health.
Read more here.
Undergoing a transformative growth over the past 40 years, the HMC has evolved to serve Qatar's growing population. Since its establishment by Emiri decree in 1979 and opening its first hospital, Rumailah Hospital to a network of 12 with its most recent addition being the Hazm Mebaireek General Hospital, which opened in 2018.
Hamad General Hospital
Being a part of the Hamad Medical Corporation, Hamad General Hospital in Doha, which opened in 1982, is a modern facility of 603 beds that features an Outpatient Department with more than 65 specialty clinics, a Walk-In-Clinic for less critical patients, and one of the busiest Emergency Departments in the world.
The hospital serves Qatar's people, offering specialized services, round the clock Emergency Care with the National Ambulance Service and its high-standard Trauma Service combined with its modern diagnostic facilities – including a robotics surgery program, fived intensive care units, and a large pharmacy.
HMC Launches New Online Medical Report Application Service,This service allows individuals to submit an application for a medical report, for themselves or on behalf of someone else, and pay the fee online without having to visit the hospital. pic.twitter.com/gGRH6clY09— مؤسسة حمد الطبية (@HMC_Qatar) November 10, 2020
Free Services For All
Hamad General Hospital offers its services to residents of Qatar and visitors for free, maintaining its non-profit character while providing a high level of service excellence, safety, hospital cleanliness, and, most of all, compassion to each and every patient.
What is worth highlighting - and what makes Qatar's health system unique - is that it provides free treatment of cancer for all residents.
“There is continuous progress in the treatment of tumors and medicine in general and we are keen to bring everything new in the treatment of tumors, especially with regard to drugs, especially immunological drugs, and have a good impact in controlling diseases. There are lots of research happening in this area and this leads to positive results. We will import any medicine that we need for the health of our patients to be included on the list of recognized medicines in the country," says Dr. Osama Al Homsi, Hamad Medical Corporation’s National Centre for Cancer Care and Research Hematology and Oncology Chairman and Senior Consultant. (https://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/article/26/03/2018/Cancer-treatment-is-now-free-for-all-residents-in-Qatar-Official)
What's more, the Day Care Unit at the National Center for Cancer Care and Research is expanded to further provide to patients with cancer. There are new beds added, and the chemotherapy services have been enhanced.
Dr. Noora Al Hammadi, Deputy Medical Director and Chair of Radiation Oncology, explained that “With Qatar’s population continuing to increase, we are treating greater numbers of cancer patients each year. To manage this demand, we have added three more clinics to the Outpatient Department: Pain Management and Palliative Care Clinic, Pharmacy Lead Clinic, and a Psychotherapy Clinic. We have also significantly improved access to cancer care across Qatar through the establishment of 37 clinics outside NCCCR, in the Ambulatory Care Center, Al Wakra Hospital, Al Khor Hospital, and the Women’s Wellness and Research Center.”
Coronavirus and HMC
The MoPH has taken all necessary measures to protect citizens' health, with advanced monitoring and other appropriate measures that have been implemented at all borders. All passengers arriving at the airport from countries with confirmed cases of COVID-19 are being referred to the airport clinic for additional screening, and all suspected cases are being transferred to Hamad Medical Corporation's (HMC) Communicable Disease Center. Intensive health awareness public education programs have also been implemented across the country.
Moreover, Hamad Medical Corporation's Hazm Mebaireek General Hospital (HMGH) has been designated as a COVID-19 treatment facility – enabling HMC to provide high-quality care for patients with COVID-19 in one single facility.
It is also worth highlighting that amid COVID-19, digital healthcare solutions were launched, along with virtual consultations.
In late March, HMC introduced a new urgent consultation telemedicine service. Since its implementation, the demand has steadily increased, with the telephone-based service currently receiving upwards of 5,000 calls each week.
“We launched this service because we wanted to ensure the safety of both patients and physicians. The urgent consultation telemedicine service has enabled us to keep patients, particularly those who are most vulnerable to severe COVID-19 illness, out of our clinics and out of the emergency department,” said Dr. Al Rumaihi, Head of Urology at HMC.