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Posted On: 1 June 2008 07:07 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:08 pm

Mandatory blood tests for people get married.

Khalifa Al Haroon
Khalifa Al Haroon
Your friendly neighborhood Qatari
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Citizens and expatriates who intend to get married in Qatar should undergo a mandatory pre-marital checkup for genetic, infectious and chronic diseases from September, the National Health Authority announced yesterday. “The bride and groom should produce the medical certificate to prove that the test was carried out,” National Health Authority (NHA) CEO Dr Michael Walsh explained. The official said the programme was not meant to make it more difficult but it was a pre-condition to assure a healthy marriage. Whether to proceed with a marriage proposal or not on the basis of the results would be left to the parties concerned. Dr Walsh said that NHA had initiated training workshops to implement the law approved by the Cabinet in this regard. Hamad Medical Corporations infectious disease department head and member of the programme committee, Dr Abdul-Latif al-Khal said that the medical checkup was going to facilitate marriage and not an obstacle to it. He said in case of diagnosing a disease, treatment would be provided. “The test results would not be registered in the marriage certificate, which states that both the groom and bride underwent the test and are aware of each other’s medical status,” he explained. Dr Al-Khal, also a member of the preparation committee for the programme, said training of medics was underway in this regard. Asked whether the Qatari society would accept the new move as some believe that negative social problems would be the result, he said that limited and temporarily damages would be much less severe than having disabled children. Dr Al-Khal said that such a programme was implemented in other Arab countries such as Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Jordan, Lebanon and Tunisia and it faced no hitches. In case of detecting a contagious disease, measures would be taken for an immediate medication. The Primary Health Care Department’s acting executive manager Dr Mariam Abdul-Malik, said the checkups would be conducted in three centres – Al-Khor Health Centre to serve the northern area, the West Bay Health Centre to serve the population in the middle of Doha, and the Airport Health Centre for the south of the state and South Doha. The pre-marriage medical checks would be held during two days of the week, in two shifts. “Except for some genetic tests which may have to done abroad, the results of the rest would be available in two weeks,” she said. The new programme is an implementation of article 18 of the family law which says that “the marriage contract is invalid without a proof that the medical check was held.” Gulf Times