August 18, 2021
The year 2020 began with a global pandemic virus COVID – 19 outbreak. In this new world, following the COVID -19 safety protocol mostly means staying away from crowded places. To achieve this, various institutions have strengthened their virtual framework. Therefore recently, the world has seen a rapid increase in telemedicine, smart hospitals, and online pharmacy.
The UAE is one of the most skilled and advanced nations in terms of technology, not just in the Middle East and Africa but in the whole world. The UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention is investing rigorously in the healthcare sector. Demographic shifts and the nation’s ambition to become a regional medical tourism hub are the major driving factors.
Major initiatives for improving the healthcare sector by the UAE government
- In January 2017, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, unfurled Dubai Health Strategy 2021. This strategy aims to provide high-quality medical care to patients with chronic diseases.
- In December 2014, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, recommended a strategy which included 85 initiatives that aimed to elevate the quality of healthcare.
- In 2015, Dubai unveiled a 10-year plan called the Dubai Clinical Services Capacity Plan that involves the construction of three new medical colleges and five nursing schools.
- In 2013, Dubai announced a 12-year plan to reshape the healthcare system, with a budget of $820 million.
Recently the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention started working on the project of the virtual hospital, which will be the first smart hospital to be built in the GCC nation. The project is being developed along with the country’s top telecom operators– Du. Once operational, the hospital will dissolve geographical barriers as the patient can get in touch with the specialist withing their homes’ comfort. It also offers opportunities to make healthcare accessible in remote or rural areas via smart monitors and artificial intelligence devices.
Features of Virtual Hospital:
- The main advantage of the virtual hospital is efficiency as patients and doctors can stay at home and can utilize their time
- The use of electronic records and digitalization in healthcare make data retrieval more accessible and resulting in efficient diagnosis and treatment processes
- Virtual hospital brings many aspects of healthcare together, including robotics, remote surgery, telemedicine among others
With the world mostly going digital in COVID -19 outbreak, the virtual hospital is not just one example. There are telemedicine offerings such as Mubadala’s Abu Dhabi Telemedicine Centre, which offers 24/7 medical consultations over the phone. In September 2019, Orient Insurance and Allianz Care launched the first UAE-based telemedicine service for international health insurance customers.
In similar lines in August 2020, a Sharjah-based healthcare company Mulk Healthcare launched its digital hospital project, Mulk E-Hospital. It will reportedly offer a range of healthcare services, including initial doctor-consultations and post-hospital care from the best international experts based in the US, UK, Thailand, Pakistan, Europe and India, and other GCC countries.
E-Hospitals or virtual hospitals are the future of healthcare services that brings full healthcare services at fingertips. From booking online appointments to the online consultation, healthcare data sharing, digital prescription to insurances, all leveling up through digital healthcare.
Source: DelveInsight – www.delveinsight.com