Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Pulmonary Diagnostic Care Laboratory has achieved the American Thoracic Society (ATS) Registry certification, indicating adherence to the highest international standards of administering pulmonary function tests (PFTs).
Chronic respiratory diseases are among the most common non-communicable diseases worldwide, imposing an immense worldwide health burden.
Qatar is also seeing higher rates of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, asthma and other respiratory tract infections. The efforts to provide the safest, most effective care to patients has been the impetus for HMC to enhance its Pulmonary Diagnostic Care Laboratory based on internationally recognised standards. The ATS Pulmonary Function Laboratory Registry is an inclusion and acknowledgment programme accepting US and international pulmonary function laboratories that commit to established standards for pulmonary function testing as outlined in the joint ATS/European Respiratory Society (ERS) series of standards for pulmonary function testing.
Dr Ahmed al-Mohamed, chairman of the Department of Medicine at HMC, explained the driving force behind his team’s efforts to be included in the ATS Registry. He said: “The Department of Medicine has been operating a PFT laboratory for 35 years. We perform around 12,000 procedures a year at PFT labs in the different HMC facilities. However, improvements in respiratory disease diagnosis and management has enabled us to introduce laboratory enhancements designed to deliver better patient care. I am proud of the team that has led this significant effort to ensure that our laboratory meets the ATS/ERS standards for inclusion in their internationally recognised Registry.”
“Pulmonary function laboratories produce information that has important clinical impact, including diagnosis and classification of disease severity, choice of therapy, response to therapy, and disease progression. We believe this is a vital step toward improving and maintaining high-quality testing in pulmonary function laboratories throughout our organisation,” added, Dr al-Mohamed.
A laboratory must apply to be included on the ATS Pulmonary Function Laboratory Registry. This is followed by submitting reports on laboratory operations and its commitment to ATS/ERS standards, which are developed in consultation with healthcare experts and providers across many countries, including testing equipment, methodology and diagnostic interpretation.
Dr Hisham Abdul Sattar, chief, Pulmonary/Sleep Division at HMC said that the team worked very hard to meet the international standards to qualify for this registry. “It took us around six months to get prepared for the registry application and finally obtain this accreditation. The inclusion of ATS registry is a symbol of quality that reflects our organisation’s commitment to providing safe and high-quality patient care. We are delighted to have been given the Approval for Pulmonary Diagnostic Care Certification, demonstrating our commitment to continuous compliance with the ATS/ERS performance standards,” he added.