Thursday, October 21, 2021
banner
Home /  Nation  /  Qatar accords top priority to health: Minister

Qatar accords top priority to health: Minister

Qatar accords top priority to health: Minister

CATHERINE W GICHUKI
DOHA
Minister of Public Health HE Dr Hanan Mohammed al Kuwari opened the first Biennial Qatar Public Health Conference, organised by the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), on Monday.
The two-day conference, themed ‘10 Years of Public Health: Looking back, moving forward’, sees participation of more than 50 local, regional and international speakers from the MoPH, ministries, medical and academic institutions, as well as leading public health institutions from around the world. The conference brings together over 500 participants from different sectors.
In a statement, the minister said public health issues are of highest priority and in 2017 a specialised public health strategy was launched under the umbrella of the National Health Strategy. “It aims to establish a comprehensive and integrated system, which can provide effective solutions for the current and future challenges and ensure health promotion and wellness for the population of Qatar, particularly the most vulnerable population groups.”
She said there have been outstanding achievements in public health, including improvements in reproductive health, maternal, neonatal and child health, in addition to reducing the number of premature deaths due to non-communicable diseases, reducing mortality and traffic injuries significantly, and enhancing the control of infectious diseases.
Kuwari added that the rate of coverage of all vaccines under the National Vaccination Programme has reached over 95 percent. According to the Global Audit Tobacco Survey data, there has been a decrease of about 40 percent in the young smokers aged 13-15 years between 2004 and 2018 in Qatar.
“The first Qatar Public Health Conference is an important event to view and make use of local, regional, and global expertise and experiences in the field of public health. It is also important to extrapolate our progress over the next 10 years in accordance with the national plans and strategies that aim to strengthen and maintain sustainability of the health system and ensure an efficient attainment of Qatar National Vision 2030 related to health,” she said.
MoPH Director of Public Health Department Sheikh Dr Mohamed al Thani said, the conference covers the scope of public health in accordance with the ‘health in all policies’ approach, adding that addressing the public health challenges in Qatar requires collaboration between all sectors in the country to support governance, share health data and information, and develop workforce capabilities, which represent the strategic enablers of the Public Health Strategy 2017-2022.
Speaking to media persons on the sidelines of the event, Sheikh Dr Mohamed said, “We have the Qatar Public Health System Doha Declaration, which will be out tomorrow (Tuesday). This will ensure that all the sectors work together for a better health for everyone.”
Sheikh Dr Thani said Qatar faced the growing burden of non-communicable diseases in common with regional and global trends.
He, however, added Qatar’s rapid progress is illustrated in its performance in global rankings whereby in a span of years, Qatar has moved from being ranked 27th to 5th in the Health Component of the Legatum Prosperity Index.
He added, “Work related injuries in Qatar is less than 10 percent; deaths from communicable diseases is less than 6 percent and we are competing with America and France; we have lowered obesity by about 20 to 25 percent in the last 8 years; we have had zero deaths in Women’s Hospital from labour during the last three years; infant and children mortality is one of the lowest in the world; we also have many laws for health including the breastfeeding; public health; mental health and other laws to support public health such as the traffic laws.”
Primary Health Care Corporation (MoPH) Managing Director Dr Mariam Abdul Malik said that PHCC conducts community outreach activities and they believe that prevention is the core business of the health system rather than cure.
Chairman of Epidemiology Department at the John Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health-US Dr David Celentano gave the keynote speech. Officials from the PHCC, Weill Cornell Medicine –Qatar, WHO and Qatar University took park in the panel discussions.

Pages