Four facilities close and physical attendance suspended at outpatient clinics across all HMC hospitals, as Qatar braces for a potential second wave.
Hamad Medical Corporation [HMC] announced changes to its visitor policy at a select number facilities, the state-owned service announced on Tuesday, as daily COVID-19 cases continue to increase across the country.
Four HMC facilities will be closing doors to all visitors from Friday, the statement confirmed, citing a surge in the number of coronavirus infections.
Changes to HMC visitor policy
From Friday 12 February, 2021 no visitors will be allowed at the following facilities:
• Communicable Disease Center
• Hazm Mebeireek General Hospital
• The Cuban Hospital
• Mesaieed Hospital pic.twitter.com/cfWsQbdluL
— مؤسسة حمد الطبية (@HMC_Qatar) February 9, 2021
Among those due to close to visitors are the Communicable Disease Center, Hazm Mebeireek General Hospital, the Cuban Hospital and Mesaieed Hospital.
“These changes are made for the safety of our patients and visitors,” the tweet read.
All remaining HMC centres will be available for visitors from 12pm to 8pm, and each visitor will be allowed a maximum period of 15 minutes, the tweet added.
To ensure safety and contain the spread of the virus, all visitors will be required to wear a mask, show their green Ehteraz and undergo body temperature checks.
The new announcement came shortly after HMC announced earlier this week that physical attendance at outpatient clinics will stop across all its hospitals from February 10, due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases in Qatar.
Consultations already scheduled will still be conducted on the day of the appointment via phone calls between the doctor and the patient, HMC added.
Qatar’s health ministry confirmed 451 new COVID-19 cases in Qatar on Wednesday, bumping the number of current active cases to 7,749 – the highest in months.
Across the world, the virus has constantly mutated into new strains, with two detected in the UK and South Africa, though Qatar has so far been spared.
Last week, the Supreme Committee for Crisis Management held a press conference to announce the reimposition of some restrictions in a bid to contain the surge in cases.