Reflecting the needs of the ever growing population in Qatar, the Out–Patient Department (OPD) of the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) is to initiate new projects. HMC has an OPD with 122 clinics in the morning and 29 in the evening which caters to more than 1,600 patients each day, according to healthcare experts.
One of the major projects is the launch of an emergency unit at the primary health centre in the Industrial Area. “A majority of the people approaching the Emergency at the HMC are labourers. By the end of this year, a ‘mini- hospital’ reserved for the labourers will be opened in the Industrial Area. This will be mainly an emergency unit attached to the Abu Baker Health Centre in the Industrial Area, which will attend to the needs of the labour population in Qatar, hence the location was selected,” Dr Khalid Abu Noor Saifeldeen, Senior Consultant, Emergency Department, told The Peninsula.
The mini-hospital will have all the facilities of the Emergency Department of the HMC. This will include X-ray, laboratory, pharmacy and specialised doctors and nurses. “The 23-bed facility will help to ease some pressure on the main emergency unit at Hamad. The mini-hospital will have ENT, Ophthalmology and all the major emergency facilities,” he said.
Leading the new projects is the introduction of pharmacy facilities in the second floor of the OPD, in two weeks. The OPD pharmacy is one of the busiest areas in the hospital with patients often waiting in long queues for hours to get medicine.
“In two weeks we will launch a new pharmacy on the second floor of the department,” said Hana Al Soubaie, Assistant Director for Ambulatory Care Services. “This will help to eases the load of the main OP pharmacy on the ground floor. Over the next few months, each of the four floors of the OPD will have a pharmacy of its own. This can help to control the over crowding and long waiting hours,” she said.
Added to this, new dialysis units and machines will also be introduced. The Hamad has 34 dialysis machines. Within two months, Qtel Dialysis Unit will be opened with 80 machines to accommodate many renal patients in Doha. In the northern part of Qatar, the Al Khor health centre has six machines and with the opening of the new dialysis unit in Al Khor Hospital, 23 machines will be added to the lot. The dialysis facility in Al Wakhra will also be increased.
“In few weeks we will introduce a greeter system in the OPD. Through this system, service providers will be available at the entrance of the department to guide, give information and help the patients. This service will be extended to each floor of the OPD later,” Al Soubaie said. The OPD has already launched many facilities to show its hospitality to the patients. This includes the SMS system which alerts the changes and cancellation in appointment. Free internet service was launched late last year in OPD.