The Centre of Empowerment and Elderly Care (Ehsan), which operates under the umbrella of Qatar Social Work Foundation (QSW), has launched the Consult Me service - a support telephone line - which aims to provide social and psychological counselling for the elderly.
Ehsan's executive director Mubarak bin Abdulaziz al-Khalifa said that the centre, especially under the current circumstances, seeks to continue providing high-quality services to the elderly in Qatar with the aim of helping to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
He explained that the aim of the service is to provide counselling and social and psychological support services to lift the morale of the elderly and their families by receiving their calls on the designated phone numbers in Arabic and English, to answer their inquiries and direct them to specialised government hotlines that suit their health condition in addition to opening a communication channel with the elderly in the local community and introduce them to the Ehsan service package.
He said that the phone calls would be answered by social and psychological specialists from the centre.
The specialised team provides social or psychological counselling and takes actions in a timely manner or directs the caller to the competent authority, al-Khalifa said, stressing maintaining the privacy and confidentiality of the call is important because the main goal is to spread reassurance and lift the morale of the elderly and their families.
Al-Khalifa also said that the team receives its information from government approved sources to avoid rumours and misinformation, as any inaccurate information regarding the Covid-19 might confuse the elderly and increase their anxiety.
"We are very careful about not discussing any matters that require diagnosis or medical and psychological treatment, and we refer these matters to the medical authorities of the Ministry of Public Health," he said.
Al-Khalifa expressed the importance of promoting this service so that the largest number of elderly citizens and residents and their families can benefit from it.
The numbers allocated to provide the service are 66722026, 66724929 and 66713878; for English speakers it is 66893755.