In light of the rapidly evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) has activated a set of remote access channels to healthcare services at Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) and Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) in collaboration with TASMU Smart Qatar, Ministry of Transport and Communicatons (MoTC), Hukoomi and Qatar Post along with notable digital solution providers. The new virtual healthcare services have been developed to ensure the safety of everyone by allowing patients to schedule an appointment with healthcare by dialing 16000 to have a virtual consultation with their healthcare provider, receiving medical advice, sick leave and get their medicine delivered to their doorstep, according to a report on the MoPH website.
Amid COVID-19 crisis, the MoPH and TASMU Smart Qatar, in collaboration with key stakeholders, introduces the following digital healthcare solution:
The nationwide new remote healthcare service initiative primarily targets three medical instances:
Patients requiring PHCC services can dial 16000 and choose the PHCC option, they will then be routed to a PHCC community call centre offering remote telephone and video consultations for patients requiring both routine and priority care. The community call centre will be operating 7 days a week from 7 am to 11 pm. Clients accessing this service can expect a video or telephone consultation with a physician that will provide them with advice, diagnosis and offer prescriptions. In addition, the service will assess those patients with routine conditions providing guidance.
HMC has launched an innovative Urgent Consultation Service, enabling patients with non-life threatening conditions to speak to a specialist physician over the phone. Patients can dial 16000 and will then be routed to an HMC coordinator who will triage their case before transferring them to a specialist.
This service will cover 11 specialties for urgent care needs only – urology, cardiology, orthopedics, general medicine, general surgery, dermatology, ENT, OBGYN, dental and pediatrics. The specialists will also be able to check and book/rebook appointments if needed. These services are available to all registered PHCC and HMC patients with Health Cards. HMC’s Department of Geriatrics has also launched a virtual clinic for patients enabling elderly patients to receive consultations in the comfort of their own home. This service has been launched to protect elderly residents in Qatar who have been advised by MoPH to stay at home unless absolutely necessary.
If patients are given care through a video or telephone consultation with their healthcare provider, and require a sick leave certificate, they will be issued sick leave electronically through the e-Jaza system, the patient can then download the sick leave certificate through the following link available on the MoPH website, using their Qatar ID/Health Card Number: https://www.qchp.org.qa/en/Pages/ValidateEJaza.aspx
HMC and PHCC are working in partnership with Q-Post to have medications delivered to your home to ensure you can receive your required medications without having to attend the health centers or clinics. This started with a segment of patients on 25th March and be will rolled out in phases to the rest of the population accordingly.
16000 will also continue to provide a 24/7 call centre service for all enquiries in relation to the COVID-19.
The call centres Nesmaak at 16060 and Hayak at 107 will remain as is for routine calls but will add a capability to route calls that require urgent attention to 16000.
The second phase of the remote access to the new healthcare mechanism is to provide access via a chatbot through the MoPH, PHCC or Hukoomi websites. Enhancing remote access to healthcare at the time of COVID-19 crisis will help curb the rapid spread of the disease. MOTC, MoPH and TASMU in collaboration with key stakeholders will continue providing quality medical care to the people of Qatar in a timely and accurate manner.
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