As part of efforts to raise the standards of healthcare services in the country, the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) is planning to make it mandatory for all private healthcare facilities to obtain accreditation from a recognised international agency or the local authorities concerned.
The SCH is currently working on a project to get international accreditation for all primary healthcare centres as well as private clinics and hospitals in the country, a senior official of the Medical Licensing Department (MLD) at SCH told this newspaper yesterday.
The Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), the leading healthcare provider in the country, has been successful in getting all its hospitals accredited by the US-based Joint Commission International.
“JCI accredits only hospitals. We are working with another leading international agency for evaluating the services of all primary health centres and private healthcare facilities and getting them accredited by the agency,” said the official.
He said the accreditation would be an important step in upgrading the quality of services at all these facilities.
The said agency will also help the MLD develop its own accreditation tools. Once the project is completed, all private clinics and hospitals will be asked to obtain accreditation from this agency or any other recognised international agencies. If they don’t not have an international accreditation they will have to get accredited by the bodies concerned at the SCH.
“Such accreditation will be made mandatory for all private healthcare facilities in future to ensure the quality of their services. No facility that fails to get this accreditation will be allowed to operate in the country, especially after the national insurance scheme is implemented,” said the official.
He said being the quality control body at SCH, the MLD is assisting the primary health centres in acquiring the accreditation. Having become an independent entity separate from the HMC, the primary healthcare sector is currently in the process of improving its standards through a wide range of measures under the supervision of SCH.
The private healthcare sector has also been witnessing a boom with a number of new clinics and hospitals set to open in the country in the near future.
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