Posted on November 05, 2014

The Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Department at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) today holds its ‘Second Occupational Health and Safety Symposium’ to further highlight the importance of ensuring safety at all times within and beyond a healthcare setting. The objective of the event which is being held at the Hamad Bin Khalifa Medical City’s Club Hotel, is to ensure participants gain a better understanding of occupational health and safety issues that impact their work environment and influence high quality patient care.

Two international speakers are scheduled to speak at the symposium. Prof. Tar Ching Aw, Director of Institute of Public Health at UAE University’s College of Medicine and Health Sciences will talk about ‘Fundamentals of Occupational Health’ and ‘Health Risks Exposure’; and Ms. Marie Claire Ross, Chief Enabling Officer and Author from Digicast Productions, Australia, will speak about ‘Strategies to Get Attention on Safety Messages’ and ‘Telltale Signs of Poor Safety Culture’.

Local speakers at the event are: Mr. Leo Dote, HMC’s OHS Safety Instructor and Acting Head of Risk Assessment section, Ms. Amal Al Langawi, Program Manager for HMC’s Health Improvement Program, Mr. Nabil Equilan, Medical Physicist at Radiation Safety section of HMC’s OHS Department, and Brig. Gen. Amman Al Sulaiti from Qatar Civil Defense Fire Safety. Representatives from HMC’s Facility Management department as well as safety committee members from HMC hospitals who are seen as leaders in ensuring health and safety compliance for their respective hospitals are expected to actively participate in the symposium. Doctors and nursing staff who take part in the event will receive 6 CME and 7 CNE points respectively.

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Dr. Huda Al Naemi, Executive Director of the OHS Department, which is spearheading the program for the second time, explained that the main aim of the symposium is to increase awareness of safety in general. “It is important to relay the message of occupational health and safety to all staff at HMC and we are trying to do that by organizing training and drills. From time to time, we also organize symposiums or conferences to further highlight the importance of occupational health and safety. We are also encouraging staff to attend conferences related to the field which are being organized outside of the Corporation.”

She said staff members attending the symposium are being encouraged to participate in the newly launched OHS eLearning program which went live on 30 October. All HMC staff members are encouraged to complete the mandatory annual training on Fire and Environmental safety through the e-Learning system.

Dr. Al Naemi explained that the e-Learning training will provide an opportunity for all staff to acquire more knowledge and information about fire and environmental safety. “Now with eLearning, it will be much easier for staff to take a course in fire and environmental safety because we realize that most employees do not have the time to attend classes due to the demands of their work. Safety is always a concern for HMC and that is why the OHS department is trying to cover a lot of issues related to safety. As HMC is growing bigger every day, we need to channel a lot of effort towards ensuring safety at all hospitals.”

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