Visiting a hospital in Dubai sometime soon is going to be a hi-tech experience like few places in the world.
A series of hi-tech innovations are set to usher in what was once the domain of futuristic space-age screen dramas.
Starting with just a swipe and a patient’s complete medical file rolling out on a screen, the app is a complete e-guide and e-access point for a patient visiting a hospital.
Dubai Health Authority is presenting its newest application at Gitex 2013, although it is still at the demo stage.
The details need to be finalised, explains Ahmed Al Omari, Acting Head of the IT Department at DHA.
Enter and swipe
From entering the hospital to the final transaction at the pharmacy, a patient is app-guided all the way.
When the patient enters the hospital, a simple swipe will enable a check in.
Find the doc
Personal details are now available, and the system directs you to the doctor with whom you have made the appointment by displaying a route description.
When entering the doctor’s office, you swipe again.
This time medical details appear on the screen; an X-Ray, of your last visit or the medication you are on, is all on display for patient and doctor to discuss.
When checking out, the final bill will be presented, which can be paid online as well.
Undecipherable handwriting – not uncommon among doctors - will no longer be an issue, as the prescribed medication will roll out on the screen as well.
Although each hospital under DHA will be provided with the check-in screens once the application is ready for launching, the patient is not dependent on the screens alone.
If the information provided is essential, one can scan the barcode with a smartphone.
After the scan, the same information can be saved on a personal device.
Buy the meds
The patient can now enter the pharmacy and present the maybe unfamiliar names of the prescribed medicine; the pharmacist will understand what is needed.
Health or insurance card
The mode of identification is yet to be determined, explains Ahmed.
“It may be the health card, or the insurance card that is to be swiped, this is still unclear.
“When insurance is involved, the total charge should automatically be discounted. This is something we are still working on.”
The application is one among several smart initiatives presented at Gitex this week.
Essa Al Maidoor, Director-General of the Dubai Health Authority, highlighted that DHA will soon introduce several IT initiatives in line with its move towards the implementation of total Information Technology(IT) solutions in the health sector.
He said: “In line with the Smart Government initiative launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the DHA has chalked out a roadmap towards total IT solutions that will significantly enhance not only customer experience but also the manner in which healthcare is delivered and managed.
“Our plan includes the use of IT services, every step of the way.”
DHA has already developed several applications of which some will be updated.
Among the DHA initiatives are apps that allow customers to view prescriptions, get prescription alerts, the apps also provide details about healthcare packages available for the public including women’s health, smoking packages and diabetes packages.
Moreover, patients can synchronise their children's vaccination schedules to get timely alerts, as well.
DHA ties up with Samsung SDS and Index Holding
The Dubai Health Authority on Monday signed an agreement with Samsung SDS in collaboration with Index Holding to provide and apply a ‘smart health care application’ to all medical and healthcare centres in Dubai.
The press conference was presided by Essa Al Maidoor, Director-General of the Dubai Health Authority, Andrew Chang, President and CEO for Samsung SDS in the MEA Region and Europe and Dr. Abdul Salam Al Madani, Chairman of Index Holding.
The partnership aims to support the co-operation between the public and private sectors in order to provide the best e-services and smart services for health care professionals, doctors, nurses, staff, officials and administrators in the health care sector.
The value of the project is around Dh250 million.
The Dubai Health Authority and Samsung SDS, in collaboration with the Emirati company Index Holding, are endeavouring to provide a comprehensive and sustainable "smart tech" solution for the health care system in Dubai.
Essa Al Maidoor emphasised the importance of joining the efforts between public and private sectors to provide excellent medical services for residents of the UAE.
"We are keen to follow the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and follow his directives that revolve around the individual’s health and education, and highlight them as priority in the government’s agenda. Sheikh Mohammed’s expectations for the Emirati people are very high. He aspires that they will be one of the most advanced nations in all fields and he doesn’t expect anything less than being number one. We are working diligently to translate his vision into reality."
Al Maidoor also announced that the DHA is studying a number of big projects that are expected to see the light soon. "We encourage collaboration between the private and the public sectors and we are partnering with prestigious private corporations in our specialty hospitals in Dubai. We would like to see Dubai as the major city in the Middle East for Health tourism," said Al Maidoor
"The healthcare system in Dubai will be connected and individuals will have access to their files and get the information that they need from anywhere and at any time. This initiative will have great benefit on many sectors in the country," said Al Maidoor.
Andrew Chang, President and CEO for Samsung SDS in the MEA Region and Europe said, "We have always had faith in Dubai and we are pleased for this opportunity and proud to partner with the Dubai Health Authority. The benefit of this collaboration will reflect positively on both sides and we are happy that we will provide the DHA with the smart technology solutions. Moreover, we not only consider Dubai as the strategic centre of the Middle East, we are also looking forward to it being our gate to enter the MEA markets through our partner, INDEX Holding."
Dr. Abdul Salam Al Madani, Chairman of Index Holding said, "We are proud to be part of this national project, and we are always keen to attract foreign investments to the UAE.. We will work diligently to support "smart government" with the help of our affiliate, Index Conferences and Exhibitions, which will promote this project in more than 25 exhibitions and events that we organise and take part in, in the UAE and throughout our branches all over the world."
The system not only connects and manages the departments at healthcare centres, it will also connect hospitals of the region with each other, as long as they are following the system in their departments. This system will reflect a lot of technical and financial benefits to the healthcare sector in the region.
Dubai possesses a large foundation of medical data, health statistics and accurate information that makes from it a point of attraction to the pioneers of researchers and professionals from the health industry and makes it a perfect host for a variety of health events. All of these aspects put Dubai at the top of the industry and a perfect example for the future smart health care system.