Tag Archives: Qatar

RIS/PACS Solution is now Available in HMC in Doha

HMCA multi-site Radiology Information Systems (RIS) and Picture Archiving and Communications System (PACS) was implemented in Doha by Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC). This system allows physicians to access their patients’ x-ray image records instead of using traditional X-ray films on their screens at the touch of a button. A better understanding of the patient’s imaging records becomes more accessible with the RIS/PACS solution.

“The new system will facilitate improved diagnosis and patient care capabilities. Imaging is becoming increasingly integral to preventive and treatment management practices. The system allows for easy access of comprehensive diagnostic information by physicians and other care providers, which enables faster patient management decision making. We placed great emphasis on not only implementing the technology but ensuring relevant training for all clinicians” said Dr. Ahmed J Omar, Acting Chairman of Radiology at HMC.

Mr. Abdullah Al Emadi, Executive Director of Health Information System (HIS) at HMC commented “Key members from the Clinicians Group, Radiology and Health Information Systems departments worked closely together to ensure the successful completion of this very large and complex project. I am delighted that we were able to roll this system out throughout seven hospitals in less than a year and a half – this is a record achievement in the global healthcare sector and reflects the achievement of a key milestone in HMC‘s strategic IT plan”.

No matter where the x-rays images and scans have been captured, the new system will record them electronically and will be viewed on any PC across HMC and this process is specified for healthcare environments. Utilizing this system creates flexibility and interoperability between different imaging devices in addition to a stable infrastructure enhancing efficiency and improving the quality of patient services within HMC.

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Hopes Across Qatar Towards Decreasing Medicines Prices

DohaIn the way to decrease medicines prices in Qatar, the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) is expected to shortly allow new importers to bring medicines to the country from multiple sources. Industry sources said “The few wholesale dealers, who had been enjoying monopoly over the market for years, would rule the roost until the industry gets ready for open competition with an expected entry of new importers”. During the previous month prices of most medicines shot up by 10 to 25%, following lifting of government control over pricing, as demanded by a set of newly issued laws.

Although the prices were expected to decrease due to those laws by liberalizing imports and opening the market to competition, the immediate result was a price hike, as dealers and pharmacies have been left free to fix the prices on their own. A citizen commented “The same batch of medicines from the same manufacturer is sold at different prices at different pharmacies. There is a difference of more than QR10 in some cases”.

The proprietor of a pharmacy chain in Doha added “With lifting of government control over pricing, there are no uniform prices in the market. The wholesalers issue a price list and we decide the retail price based on that, considering our profit margin. There may be variations in the prices, as in the case of other commodities, but they will be narrowed down as the market matures for competition”. It’s believed by industry sources that as a result of importing several products from various sources which will be available in the market, prices would come down in the near future.

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The First Qatar National Health Accounts Report Discussed Healthy Problems

DohaThe Supreme Council of Health (SCH) in Doha submitted the first Qatar National Health Accounts Report on Saturday. This report shows that Qatar spent last year QR9.53bn on healthcare of which 77.5% was funded by the public sector and 22.5% by the private sector. “Although the total health expenditure increased by only 1.6 percent between 2009 and 2010, the QR9.53bn spent on health was distributed as follows: 26 percent for in-patient, long term, and rehabilitative care services, 27 percent for out-patient and daycare services, 12 percent for ancillary services such as clinical laboratories, 9.5 percent for medical goods dispensed to outpatients, 9 percent for public health and insurance, 15 percent for gross capital formation (investment) in health, and 1.5 percent for all other services” commented on the report Dr Faleh Mohamed Hussain Ali, Assistant Secretary General for Policy Affairs at the SCH.

The Minister of Health, Ahbdulla bin Khalid Al Qahtani commented on the report titled “A baseline analysis of health expenditure and utilization” that the several stakeholders in Qatar‘s healthcare system must cooperate more than that to develop the right policies based on accurate analyses. According to the report “To free resources and enhance efficiency of the healthcare system, the SCH planned a specific reform to gradually transfer the services from the tertiary care providers to the ambulatory providers. Efforts should be made to ensure that this reform is enhanced by a gradual reallocation of funds from the public hospitals to the primary healthcare PHC”.

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HMC Received Grants for Improving Research Projects

DohaThe Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC)‘s research projects have been developed with a huge grant that the cooperation received recently, as a senior official announced. Dr Hanan Al Kuwari, HMC Managing Director said “This is an excellent achievement, and a testament to the quality and potential of the HMC researchers. It is also an indication of the strong support the Medical Research Center and all those involved in research have given. We are proud that every year the total grants to HMC are increasing, and I am confident we will keep that positive trend up”.

The fourth cycle of Qatar National Research Fund’s (QNRF) National Priorities Research Program (NPRP) presented the award of 12 grants coasting over QR39.5m to HMC. Dr Al Hareth Al Khater, Chairman of HMC’s Medical Research Centre (MRC) mentioned “This achievement reflects the commitment, professionalism and capacity of our researchers”.

“We have quite a spectrum of grants for research in internal medicine, including studies in diabetes – particularly in regard to preventing its complications; kidney disease related to diabetes, which looks at novel therapies; and metabolic defects in subjects at increased risk of type 2 diabetes. We have many proposals touching on diabetes which is one of the national priorities, as we are seeing an epidemic of this disease particularly in the Gulf region, due to changes in lifestyle” he added.

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Qatar Hosts Launching of Gulf Federation of Manufacturers of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Supplies

DohaThe medical issues of the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Yemen will be patronized and regulated by the first union called The Gulf Federation of Manufacturers of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Supplies launched in Doha. Qatar-based Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting (GOIC) was the organizer of the constituent meeting.

Abdul-Aziz bin Hamad Al-Aqeel, the GOIC Secretary General commented on this occasion that this union represents a huge step in developing this vital industry, because of what is provided by the sector of the pharmaceutical industry of promising opportunities for investment. He added that the investments in the pharmaceutical drugs market in the GCC member states and Yemen is estimated at $ six billions.

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SCH Applies New System to Decrease Prices of Medications in Doha

SCHIndustry Sources in Doha expect that the high prices of medications would take some time until the market gets ready for a new system of open competition. In order to reduce the prices of medications, the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) has done a lot according to the new laws that aim to promote competition in the market by ending the monopoly of a few exclusive dealers. Prices of various medicines increase by about 25% in the past few days. The pricing section in The Pharmacy and Drug Control Department at SCH is canceled to be prepared for addressing more products as well as new importers of medicines.

The prices were left to be determined by the demand and supply equation in the market that is controlled by wholesalers and retailers. An expert said “Prices could go up initially since the government has abstained itself from determining the prices. But they should come down ultimately as more importers would enter the market and bring products from multiple sources”. A source at the Pharmacy and Drug Control Department mentioned that some traders tried to use the situation by raising the prices, and the department wasn’t ready to handle this. The new system will allow the prices of medicines to vary in different retail outlets, according to the industry sources.

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Qatar Attends WHA 64th Session in Geneva

GenevaQatar is participating in the 64th session of the World Health Assembly Conference taking place currently in Geneva. The leader of Qatar’s delegation to the WHA 64th session is Minister of Public Health, Dr Abdullah bin Khalid Al Qahtani, who is also the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Health (SCH).

In the beginning of the World Health Assembly (WHA) around delegates from 193 countries met yesterday. The conference will discuss several topics such as a report from an independent pandemic review committee, a virus-sharing agreement, and the fate of the world’s remaining smallpox virus stocks.
Housekeeping tasks are mainly involved in Today’s agenda such as electing a president for this year’s assembly and adopting a provisional agenda. The president is Cyprus’ health minister, Dr Christos Patsalides. Dr Margaret Chan, the WHO’s director-general started the WHA’s first day with a main statement. “A trend is emerging that puts the world’s latest and best health technology into the hands of countries that need it the most” she said.

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SCH Approves New medical Tests at Private Hospitals in Doha

SCHThe start of the Medical Commission services at three private hospitals in Doha has been delayed. The Supreme Council of Health (SCH) has allowed the Al Ahli Hospital, Al Emadi Hospital and the Doha Clinic to deliver the mandatory medical check up for some categories of foreign workers. The service was expected to start in the beginning of this month. Those three hospitals have not started the tests until now. Dr Ibrahim Al Shaar, Medical Commission director said “The hospitals have just completed installation of the online network for the tests and are now testing the functioning of the system. They will be able to start the tests in a few days”. The Doha Clinic was ready to begin the tests, according to the hospital sources.

An official in the hospital revealed “We have been asked by the Medical Commission to use their special software to link the hospitals with the Commission for transfer of the test results and related data. The service has been delayed due the time required for installing this software. Now we are ready and are waiting for the final nod from the SCH to start the tests”. Particular professionals will benefit from those tests at the private hospitals such as doctors, engineers, lawyers, university teachers etc. The official added “We will provide the service at charges that are lower than the ceiling fixed by the Supreme Council of Health“. At the private hospital, the tests will cost QR600 to QR1, 200 depending on the nature of the test. The Medical Commission added QR100 to the total charge.

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HMC Launches ‘Qatar Healthcare Risk Management Week’ in Doha

DohaThe inaugural ‘Qatar Healthcare Risk Management Week’ has been launched in Doha by Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) discussing enhancing the knowledge and expertise of professionals involved in healthcare risk management. The event will continue until the 12th of May. Gary Needle, Assistant Managing Director, Dr Badriya Al Ali, Executive Director of Quality Management Department, Dr Yousef Al Maslamani, Chief of Staff HGH and Dr Moza Alishaq, Chairperson of the event and Assistant Executive Director of Risk Management and Patient Safety at HMC were present during the event’s inauguration. Dr Moza commented “Risk Management Week is first-of-its-kind international meet being held in the GCC. We have invited a host of eminent speakers from the region, who will share their experience and also conduct workshop for participants from HMC and other medical professionals from Qatar“.

Dr Moza also revealed that the idea of the event resulted to reduce risk and increase the quality of care and assure culture of safety due the need for risk management in healthcare organizations. She added “As part of the activities during the Risk Management Week, there was a Root Cause Analysis (RCA) workshop on May 8 and 9. It was conducted by Professor Seval Akjun, Chief Quality officer and Professor of Medicine and Public Health, Basknet University in Turkey. Until May12, we will have different speakers from GCC area and medical professionals from HMC give lectures on various topics of interest”. Several issues will be discussed including Managing Clinical Risk, Risk Management and Its Importance in Organizations, Integrating Patient Safety into Microsystems, Controlling “Salmonella’ Outbreak at HMC, Discharge Against Medical Advice in Pediatric Emergency (DAMA), among many other relevant issues.

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The First Robotic ENT Surgery carried out in Qatar

QatarA robotic ENT procedure has been recently carried out for the first time in the region in Qatar. The Qatar Robotic Surgery Center (QRSC) operated the surgery. Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP) cooperated with Hamad Medical Corporation to develop this surgery quality. Dr Abdulla Al Ansari, Chairman of Surgery at Hamad Medical Corporation and Director of the Qatar Robotic Surgery Center told The Peninsula at the sidelines of Pumps and Pipes Conference “The ENT (Ear Nose Throat) procedure was done two weeks ago for tongue reduction. We started robotic procedures with urology, cardiovascular and general surgery. Recently we went to ENT as we needed to know about the scope of robotic procedures in ENT — head and neck. We found there was much area for development”.

One of the main advantages of Robotic procedure in ENT is that there is no need to do any cut during the procedure. Al Ansari added “Robots can go deep inside through the mouth. The surgery was performed to remove parts of tongue usually done on obese people who have trouble in breathing. The surgery makes more space for air passage making respiration easier. This is the first procedure done in the region and very few similar surgeries are done in Europe. For the past six months we have been studying the scope of the procedure and after September, we will see more of similar procedures in the ENT specialization” .

The robotic daVinci master-slave system is used in robotic surgery which is a minimal invasive surgical approach. The surgery is completely controlled by the surgeon who benefits from an advanced 3D view and enhanced precision. The patient has a lot of benefits from a robotic procedure, such as experiencing less traumatic injury, post procedural pain and risk and recovery becomes faster.

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