Managing Director of the Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) Dr. Mariam Ali Abdulmalik underlined that the health sector, since the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, has worked hard and with dedication around the clock to protect the society and address this global pandemic.
In remarks on Monday, the PHCC Managing Director said that the Primary Health Care Corporation has spared no effort in this endeavour, in addition to the intensive and daily directives from H.E. the Minister of Public Health to follow up the process of work, in order to withstand and overcome this ordeal and provide proper health services in accordance with the highest international standards.
She added that the State of Qatar and its wise leadership paid exceptional attention to the health sector, to enable citizens and residents enjoy high-quality health services at any time, stemming from the belief in the importance of building a healthy society in promoting the comprehensive development process at all levels. Based on this fact, the Primary Health Care Corporation has committed to achieving the strategic recommendations, which focus on the health of the patient, and on facilitating the experience of individuals and families when they need any of the PHCC services.
She underlined that the "Health for All" is not just a slogan, but rather a clear approach based on a well-studied plan of action that aims at the continuous development of services and the geographical and service expansion, through adopting an integrated care model that starts with the family doctor as the first point of contact for the customer service, whether to promote a healthy lifestyle and disease prevention or to provide treatment services.
The PHCC Managing Director underlined that the health sector in the State of Qatar competes with global services in terms of quality, speed and availability of human and material capabilities, in an effort to create a healthy society free of diseases, and realizes that prevention is better than cure, through the National Health Strategy 2018-2022, which emphasizes the importance of health education, in addition to the medical services provided by the State to the citizen, resident and visitor alike.
She explained that the PHCC launched its strategic plan for 2019-2023 under the slogan "A healthier Future for Our Families", consisting of six basic priority areas, 20 strategic goals and 80 strategic activities. Two of the six priority areas are centred on the patient through providing integrated and high-quality family medicine and focusing on preventive health, while the other four areas related to the workforce, strong partnerships with patients, families and communities, improvement of the primary care system, cooperation for patient care and safety, as well as an effective and innovative organization.
On the success of the Ministry of Public Health and the health institutions operating under its umbrella in confronting the coronavirus pandemic, Dr. Mariam Abdulmalik said that Qatar's strategy to respond to the (COVID-19) pandemic relies heavily on examining community members, tracking cases and placing them in health isolation as part of its efforts to reduce the spread of infection in the community.
She added that early detection of cases contributes to early treatment as well, which may prevent the emergence of complications, and this has contributed to the low death rates from the virus in Qatar, to be among the lowest rates in the world in terms of the virus-related deaths.
In the past few months, "we have had to learn and develop faster than ever before, and I am confident that we will continue to face challenges with the same determination and commitment to the quality that we have achieved so far. We are proud of the progress we have made, and we will continue our work closely with our community partners in our battle against (COVID-19)," she said.
Managing Director of PHCC Dr. Mariam Ali Abdulmalik stressed the need to be careful, take the matter seriously, continue to adhere to health guidelines and laws, and not be reckless because the threat of the virus still exists, praising in this context the distinguished relationship that links all health institutions in the country, which was clearly evident during the pandemic.
Dr. Mariam Abdulmalik spoke about the health tactical leadership team for services in the community that she chairs and includes several clinical and operational leaders from the MoPH, PHCC, and Hamad Medical Corporation, where the team leads the planning and implementation of all community activities related to the containment of the COVID-19 outbreak.
She stated that the team oversees sanitary quarantine facilities in the State of Qatar, including planning and managing the capacity of these facilities, and preparing policies and procedures related to sanitary quarantine practices and health care for previously closed areas such as the Industrial Area, to ensure their compatibility with the sector's services on a wider scale.
Dr. Mariam Abdulmalik added that the team is also responsible for planning and implementing the process of community examination in the State of Qatar, as it has succeeded in expanding the scope of testing by allocating some health centers to conduct examinations, and the possibility of conducting tests inside vehicles in designated facilities and recently providing home health care, in addition to modifying policies and procedures to meet the emerging needs for this service.
The team also supervises checks for travellers and facilitates entry for citizens and residents of the State of Qatar, in addition to examining travelers outside the State of Qatar, and at present, the team works in cooperation with MoPH to examine students and administrative and teaching staff to ensure that they are free of COVID-19.
Dr. Mariam Abdulmalik noted the support of HE the Minister of Public Health for the tactical team to ensure its work according to the highest standards, adding that Qatar's strategy to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic relied heavily on testing community members, tracking cases, and placing them in health quarantine as part of its efforts to reduce the spread of infection in the community.
She said that during this crisis, the amendment of policies and procedures contributed to strengthening the health system, which applies greatly to PHCC, which is now providing through its health centers multiple home services, virtual consultations, and options for conducting vehicle screening in facilities designated to provide safe healthcare while maintaining social distancing.
She called on high-risk individuals and their families to take advantage of the PHCC's many services that include high-quality virtual consultations, health workers home visits, in addition to the possibility of conducting an in-vehicle examination in the designated facilities in the three centers, namely, Al Thumama, Leabaib, and Al Waab, according to dates determined in advance.
Regarding the services of the PHCC health centers during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Mariam Abdulmalik said that the PHCC has maintained some important services for the patients, such as clinics for a healthy child and vaccinations, ultrasound clinics, and pre-marital screening clinics that are available in Leabaib Center, Airport Center, Al Khor Center, Al Rayyan Center and West Bay Center.
Managing Director of PHCC Dr. Mariam Ali Abdulmalik added that the corporation urged the patients to attend health centers only when necessary and in the event of an actual need for medical advice, and they can obtain periodic health services via online and virtual services provided by the PHCC remotely.
Cover image source: PHCC
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