(MENAFN - Arab News) Health Minister Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah instructed officials to treat emergency cases promptly and follow up on their referral to various facilities.
The minister was addressing health officials, including emergency department directors, crisis management managers and health care coordinators in 20 health regions and others who are involved in the administration of these facilities.
Al-Rabeeah underlined the need for immediate attention to emergency cases and said that mishandling of cases is inexcusable. "We will not allow negligence and will not accept any excuses for not attending to emergency cases," he noted.
The minister, who introduced the "Patients First" program last year, said that the Kingdom's health care services are focused on patients and their interests. He pointed out that emergency departments are an important pillar in any hospital and that officials have to ensure proper function of such a department.
The minister said that providing beds for patients is a major challenge. "There is now an adequate number of beds for in-house patients thanks to the support extended by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah," he said.
In August, a referral project launched by the Ministry of Health was merged with the Emergency Department to speed up referral and treatment services.
The minister lauded the efforts of those involved in the new call center and referral programs, affirming that the ministry is strenuously working to improve the quality of services provided to patients.
The call center is a 24-hour phone-in service on toll free number 937 launched by the Ministry of Health for people to contact the ministry from their land line, mobile or emergency phones.
Al-Rabeeah said that 18 trained officials tend to immediate health problems by providing information. He said health officials work in three shifts around the clock.
He said the program was implemented in line with the vision of King Abdullah and Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, who are keen on making patient care a top priority in the health care services offered by the Kingdom.
The center is equipped with a state-of-the-art communications system and a hotline to reach the Ministry of Interior, as well as leading edge technology in audiovisual communication.
There is also a section to receive calls, a follow-up division and a division for medical services and telegrams, as well as a section for archives and statistics, operating rooms and crisis management.