Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Tobacco Control Centre, a designated World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre, participated in a virtual meeting organised by WHO on Monday.

The meeting discussed smoking cessation services and related treatments. The discussion involved experts from WHO in Geneva and the Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean.

Dr Ahmad al-Mulla, head of HMC’s Tobacco Control Centre, presented a scientific paper which discussed Qatar’s experience in providing treatment for smokers during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Over 70 participants attended the meeting, with the list of speakers including Dr Asmus Hammerich, director, Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health and Dr Fatimah El Awa, regional adviser for the Tobacco Free Initiative.

Dr Heba Fouad, regional surveillance officer, Dr Dongbo Fu, medical officer for Tobacco Cessation at WHO in Geneva, and Dr Feras al-Hawari, chief, section of pulmonary and critical care and director, Cancer Control Office at the King Hussein Cancer Centre in Jordan were also in attendance.

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, HMC’s Tobacco Control Center has continued to provide consultations and support, including medications and psychological support for tobacco-dependent patients through telephone-based consultations.

The Centre recently celebrated its third anniversary of being a WHO Collaborating Centre. It was in 2017 that HMC's Tobacco Control Center was designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre, the first in Qatar and the region.

WHO Collaborating Centres, which also includes research institutes and parts of universities and academies, are designated to carry out activities in support of the WHO's mandated international health agenda.