Walk-in clinics for minor injuries open at all health centres
08 Nov 2017 - 10:15
By Fazeena Saleem | The Peninsula
The Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) has opened walk-in clinics at all health centers, to provide better and appropriate treatment for patients with minor injuries.
The clinics provide integrated services for injuries such as burns, wounds, non-displaced fractures and in some cases removable of easily accessible foreign bodies, says Dr Samya Ahmad Al Abdulla, Executive Director of Operation Department, PHCC.
The National Primary Healthcare Strategy 2013-18 recommended transferring the walk in clinics from Hamad Medical Corporation to the PHCC. “This was because statistics showed that the majority of patients attending the walk in clinics could receive suitable care in health centres. Those who needed emergency care would be transferred to an accident and emergency department,” Dr Al Abdulla told The Peninsula.
Until recent months only some health centers were co-located with walk in clinics. With the new move all health centres (except Al Jumailiya) provide the service and in the initial period of seven weeks between July and August 1272 patients were treated for minor injuries.
“PHCC made the committed to improve patients’ experience by ensuring that those with a range of minor injuries would receive high quality, equitable, accessible, integrated, patient-centred assessment and treatment in their chosen health centre rather than delaying their care by transferring for treatment elsewhere,” said Dr Al Abdulla.
All physicians at the walk-in clinics with considerable experience in emergency care and are competent to assess and treat minor injuries. Also physicians and other staff were given special training to treat patients.
“Physicians at the co-located walk in clinics has considerable experience in emergency care. At other health centers we have chosen physicians with competence in treating minor injuries. They also underwent a refreshing course at the Weill Cornell Medicine – Qatar on how to manage minor injuries including assessment,” said Dr Al Abdulla.
The staff at health centres also underwent a five day practicing session based on the course, under the supervision of physicians.
“Sometimes the injury may be more serious than the patient realises, however our physicians are trained to assess the injury and know when to refer for more specialised treatment. However, wounds in certain areas of the body such as the face, or displaced fractures, will not be treated health centers,” said Dr Al Abdulla.
She also requests patients to call the PHCC hotline 107 to book their appointments instead of coming directly to the health centers.
“We want our patients to attend their appointments on time and if they are not able to attend for any reason, they need to cancel or reschedule their appointments by calling 107 or visiting the center,” said Dr Al Abdulla.