Meet your ‘Dubai approved’ doctor via video call

By Rajive Singh

DHCC launches Live Regulated Telehealth Platform

DUBAI 31 January 2019: Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC) yesterday announced the first regulated telehealth platform in the free zone, launching the new service with a live consultation between a patient at Arab Health, following up with a licensed doctor in the free zone.

DHCC’s telehealth application (https://telehealth.dhcc.ae/) in partnership with GetBEE (www.GetBee.com), a technology start-up specializing in business-to-business solution, facilitates live medical consultations and Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM), connecting patients through tools such as video conferencing. The platform gives patients the flexibility, convenience, and reach of licensed health services from the comfort of their homes.

The World Health Organization defines telehealth as involving the use of telecommunications and virtual technology to deliver healthcare outside of traditional clinical facilities.

Live Consultation

At Arab Health, DHCC connected a patient to a licensed clinical facility through technology. On the DHCC stand, Dr. Abdul Kader Weiss, Specialist General Surgeon, from the Emirates Specialty Hospital (ESH) in DHCC, the first clinical partner to join the platform, spoke to the model patient Raghad through videoconferencing from the hospital.

The presented case was that of a patient who underwent ultrasound tests at the hospital and wanted to follow up as she was finding it difficult to breathe and swallow. Based on the test results, Dr. Weiss reassured Raghad that the benign thyroid cyst (size of 2.5 cm) is the cause of her breathing difficulty, and that the cyst can be treated with a minor procedure without removing the entire thyroid gland.

Innovating Patient Care

“Innovating patient care is at the heart of DHCC’s new initiative – a regulated, virtual gateway between healthcare facilities in the free zone and patients anywhere,” said Omar Oumeish, Executive Director of Dubai Healthcare City Authority, the governing body of the DHCC free zone. He added, “With the new telehealth platform, DHCC is expanding the reach of highly-qualified physicians and specialists from the free zone globally – irrespective of the location of the patient.”

According to research studies, telehealth has the potential to deliver timely care over distance, and in the case of RPM, telehealth can help patients achieve their healthcare goals, and, in some cases, lower the incidence of avoidable hospitalization for patients with chronic conditions.

Safe Healthcare

In this context, Dr. Ramadan AlBlooshi, CEO, Dubai Healthcare City Authority – Regulatory (DHCR), emphasized the importance of regulation in telehealth. He said, “Safe delivery of quality healthcare is paramount – whether it is an in-person visit or a telehealth consultation. DHCC’s telehealth platform is regulated and compliant with data protection standards.”

He explained that healthcare operators in DHCC need a permit to provide telehealth services and only licensed healthcare professionals can provide these. Dr. AlBlooshi said, “DHCC facilities providing telehealth services are required to maintain documented policies and procedures to ensure safe practices and adhere to data protection mechanisms. In addition, DHCR conducts regular inspections to ensure compliance.”

Dubai Gazette