Doha: The Prime Minister and Minister of Interior HE Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz Al Thani officially opened Hamad Medical Corporation’s new Al Maha Pediatric Specialized Care Center. Present at the opening ceremony were HE Dr Hanan Mohamed Al Kuwari, Minister of Public Health, and a number of senior health officials. The Prime Minister toured all units of the new center and was briefed about the services it provides to patients and their families.
“The Al Maha Pediatric Specialized Care Center offers expert long-term and acute care for children with special needs. This unique center, the first of its kind in the region, is an ideal facility designed to create a home-like environment aimed at promoting a better quality of life for children with long-term care needs. The Center reflects the achievement of one of our National Health Strategy’s key goals, which is to provide high-quality care based on international best practice standards,” said Dr Al Kuwari.
The Al Maha Center is located within the Al Wakra Hospital campus, thereby enabling fast access to this major general hospital if required. The Al Maha Center is spread over 20,000m² of floor area, which includes a range of inpatient and outpatient areas. There are six inpatient units with 105 beds, of which 69 are private rooms, as well as 13 outpatient clinic rooms. The beautifully designed venue, which includes gardens, recreational facilities and family areas, was the recipient of a European Healthcare Design Award and the winner of a World Architecture Award.
“Children have unique developmental and emotional needs and their environment, in this case a hospital, can play a significant role in responding to these needs. Our aim was to achieve a family-focused hospital design that addressed the multiple and often complex needs of these children and their families,” said Ali Al Janahi, HMC’s Acting Assistant Managing Director and Chief of Tertiary Hospitals Group. “The Center offers a pediatric healthcare environment that includes not only high-quality treatment rooms for children but also family spaces and fun areas to stimulate the children and encourage better family engagement. In addition, the center provides family and attendant education facilities.”
The patients’ medical needs can be provided in one location, including medical, diagnostic and therapy services (such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, assistive technology, audiology services, seating and positioning and feeding and swallowing as well as psychological support and intervention ). The Center also provides innovative services such as aquatic therapy offered in a state-of-the-art multi-level hydrotherapy pool, music and art therapy, virtual reality treatment, in addition to other related services designed to provide the best opportunities adapted to the specific needs of each child. Treatments and diagnosis are provided in 26 individual therapy rooms and four group therapy rooms, as well as three gymnasiums.
In addition to patient and family areas, the center includes a cafeteria and mosque as well as training and conference facilities for staff professional development and family consultation purposes.
“The successful transfer of our long-term pediatric patients, many of whom are children with chronic respiratory failure requiring long-term ventilation, was due to the combined efforts of the multidisciplinary teams involved and their meticulous planning and attention to detail. Equally important was ensuring that the parents were kept informed every step of the way,” said Dr. Abdulaziz Al Darwish, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Rumailah Hospital and Deputy Chief Medical Officer of HMC.