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MENAFN - The Peninsula - 23/09/2012

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(MENAFN - The Peninsula) A major overhaul of the emergency services at all the hospitals of the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), which is currently under way has resulted in reduced waiting time for patients, the HMC has claimed.

HMC recently appointed Professor Peter Cameron, an expert in Emergency Medicine from Australia to lead a multi-disciplinary team that is tasked with transforming emergency services across all of the HMC hospitals.

The Hamad General Hospital (HGH) has one of the busiest emergency departments in the world, treating between 1,200 and 1,500 patients on an average daily. Despite continued efforts to improve the services, complaints of crowding and delayed treatment have been rampant.

"A comprehensive review of the Emergency Department practices led to recommendations for improvement based on international standards that are now being implemented rapidly by a globally recognised multi-professional team," said a HMC statement yesterday.

The project has started yielding results, with 87 percent of patients arriving at the emergency department now discharged in less than four hours, meeting international standards, it added.

The number of cancelled operations has fallen by over 80 percent since January, thanks to better management. "Waits for a bed in the recovery room following surgery are now almost a thing of the past: the number of patients waiting has reduced from around eight per day at the end of February to zero on most days. Overnight waits for admission to an inpatient bed have seen a dramatic reduction of 70 percent," claimed the statement.

There have also been significant upgrades to the facilities. A new Female See and Treat facility is now in place, and the trauma, isolation and VIP rooms are all now state-of-the-art.

Medical Intensive Care Unit beds were opened at HGH and at the Heart Hospital for cardiac patients waiting to receive specialised emergency care. Recruitment of 28 new doctors and nurses helped considerably in reducing overall waiting time. Seventy-two new emergency nurses will be appointed by October.

The establishment of the 'See and Treat' clinic last year for less seriously ill patients resulted in better streaming so that those patients could have minor treatment and be discharged more quickly. "Our recruitment strategy is designed to attract even more new emergency specialists and retain the best of our trainee emergency doctors. Our objective is to transform our ED into a world leading emergency center, ensuring improved patient care and satisfaction," said Dr Yousef Al Maslamani, Medical Director at HGH and Assistant Professor of Clinical Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College.


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