Qatar's public healthcare sector has launched a national campaign ‘Where For Your Care’ to educate the public on the use of emergency and urgent healthcare services as over 20% of the calls to the Ambulance Department are for non-emergency services.
“We noticed that 20% of the calls received daily through the National Command Centre asking for Ambulance Service, are for non-emergency cases. Such cases do not require any emergency response that the ambulances are speeding through the roads, disturbing the traffic and the people on the road and moving with the Priority One response,” said Ali Darwish, assistant executive director, Emergency and Scheduled Ambulance Service, Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC).
Darwish, speaking at the launch of the campaign Wednesday, explained that the campaign aims to highlight the wide range of emergency and urgent care services across HMC, Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC), Sidra Medicine, and Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS).
“We have launched the campaign to redirect all the calls which are non-emergency and non-life threatening such as minor trauma or other illnesses to other facilities in the primary health care centres across the country. Knowing all the steps during the call is a good method for all call takers and the user to understand and build up a good picture about the call. Once we realise the call and understand the priority, we will be able to redirect them accordingly to the nearest facility,” Darwish said.
The Ambulance Service, which provides life-saving care to patients with critical conditions, is to be used for situations such as heart attack, stroke; seizure, choking, chest pain, unconsciousness, difficulty breathing and severe allergic reaction.
“Through the campaign, we aim to help patients make the best choice for their medical care needs. So the public will understand the message and will play a big role in this campaign. This will ensure that ambulance service is used for emergency services,” added, the official.
A website,, also has been launched to have all the information regarding emergency and urgent care in Qatar in one dedicated place.
The campaign brings together the key public health sector providers such as Ministry of Public Health, HMC, PHCC, Sidra Medicine, and QRCS to work jointly to raise awareness of services. Each provider offers various emergency and urgent care services Qatar’s population.
The campaign focuses on five key points that are critical to ensuring an ambulance reaches the patient as quickly as possible to deliver live-saving treatment. They are: Dial 99 immediately, Know your location; Answer all questions; Follow all instructions and Give way to ambulances.
The campaign encourages the public to save ambulances for emergencies. and is aimed at reducing the volume of non-emergency 999 calls to the Ambulance Service. ‘Where For Your Care?’ aims to educating the public on the types of symptoms and conditions to call an ambulance as well as alternative treatment options for cases that are not life-threatening. The campaign focuses on improving the efficiency of the health sector by advocating correct use of available services and help patients receive the best possible medical care.