DOHA: All private healthcare practitioners who were issued licences before 2009 have been asked by the Supreme Council of Health (SCH) to submit their credentials for a fresh verification.
The certificates have to be submitted to Dataflow, an international company specialising in document verification. In 2009, SCH assigned the company to scrutinise credentials of all healthcare practitioners seeking a licence to practise in Qatar.
SCH has issued a circular to private doctors, nurses and other healthcare practitioners who can submit documents — educational qualification and experience certificates — online.
A senior SCH official said the directive was part of a process to bring all practitioners under a unified verification system.
“We launched this system in 2009, in collaboration with Dataflow. However, some practitioners have not gone through the process since licences were issued to them before 2009. Their documents were scrutinised by other methods, but we want to make sure all undergo the same process,” Dr Jamal Rashid Al Khanji, Director of the Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety Department at SCH told The Peninsula.
Asked what action would be taken if any practitioner fails the verification, Al Khanji said, “We are not expecting such cases because all healthcare practitioners in Qatar are aware of the consequences of working with false documents.”
Since SCH hired Dataflow, hundreds of cases were detected in which applicants tried to procure a licence to work in Qatar using forged documents. They were blacklisted by SCH and banned from working in Qatar and other GCC countries.
Al Khanji said public complaints regarding the performance of private healthcare practitioners and facilities had come down significantly following stringent monitoring by SCH.
This May SCH had asked all private hospitals and clinics not to impose any further hike in their prices until the national health insurance scheme is fully implemented. “This directive is still in force and we have not permitted any facility to increase fees since then, but in a few exceptional cases, where the request was found genuine,” said Al Khanji.
He said SCH is working on a plan to bring licensing and accreditation of private healthcare facilities under a single department. “This department will be responsible for licensing and monitoring all facilities. However, licences for healthcare professionals are now issued by the newly set up Qatar Council for Health Practitioners,” he added.