The National Diabetes Centres at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) have adopted a multidisciplinary approach to patient care, providing patients with improved access to specialised treatment and offering a range of diabetes-related services.
“The vision for the National Diabetes Centres is a patient-centred facility that offers diabetes treatment through an interdisciplinary team approach. With centres located at both Hamad General Hospital (HGH) and Al Wakra Hospital, (AWH) these facilities serve as one-stop shops in which patients can speak with specialist doctors and nutrition experts, understand their disease status, adjust medications and treatment plans as appropriate, and learn how to manage their condition,” said Prof Abdul-Badi Abou-Samra, chairman of the department of internal medicine at HMC.
The diabetes management teams, which include multidisciplinary healthcare professionals, offer a range of specialist services, including foot care, counselling and education, blood investigation and insulin pump therapy. The National Diabetes Centre at HGH sees about 2,000 adult and 700 paediatric patient visits each month. The new diabetes centre at AWH, receives approximately 400 patient visits per month.
Prof Abou-Samra said that the National Diabetes Centres are an integral part of the newly launched Supreme Council of Health’s National Diabetes Strategy, which aims to connect all health providers in Qatar as part of efforts to further develop health services delivered to diabetes patients.
“The opening of the National Diabetes Centre at AWH is particularly noteworthy in that it has significantly increased HMC’s capacity to provide specialised diabetic care to our population. Our colleagues at the Primary Health Care Corporation now have a second location to refer patients who require diabetic care, further easing the pressure on services at HGH and improving our ability to provide the best possible care,” said Prof Abou-Samra.
Diabetes has reached epidemic proportion in Qatar with about 17% of the Qatari adult population thought to have diabetes. About 11% of the population is estimated to be pre-diabetic and it is anticipated that as many as a third of diabetics are not aware they have the disease.
“Adopting a healthy lifestyle can help prevent or delay the onset of diabetes and is critical to managing the disease. Being overweight and engaging in unhealthy habits, such as smoking, make it difficult to manage the disease and increase the risk for high blood cholesterol and high blood pressure, which are common risk factors for cardiovascular disease, a leading cause of death among people with diabetes,” added Prof Abou-Samra.
Last year HMC launched an awareness campaign designed to increase public understanding of diabetes and to empower residents to take control over their health. The 18-month campaign, which concludes this month, aims to highlight risk factors of the disease, raise awareness of associated signs and symptoms, and provide strategies to manage and prevent diabetes and lifestyle-related conditions.
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