Dubai: By-appointment only visits to all private healthcare facilities
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Dubai: By-appointment only visits to all private healthcare facilities

Dubai: By-appointment only visits to all private healthcare facilities

All staff and visitors must continue to wear masks at all times and strictly comply with physical distancing guidelines

Dubai Covid-19

The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) issued a circular on Wednesday mandating that all appointments at private healthcare facilities in the emirate must be booked in advance to avoid crowding.

There should be a minimum interval of 20 minutes between that appointments. Also, a minimum distance of two metres should be maintained by patients in the waiting areas.

The circular outlined the rules which are effective immediately and part of the precautionary measures aimed at further preventing the the spread of Covid-19.

Among the other directives, all staff and visitors should continue to wear masks at all times and strictly comply with physical distancing guidelines.

The DHA also instructed private health facilities to close children’s play and entertainment areas so that they can disinfect all amenities in the facility with special attention given to the reception, patient waiting areas, consulting rooms, elevators and door handles, reported Dubai Media Office. These disinfection processes should be properly documented.

Private health facilities must also provide hand disinfectants and sanitisers at its entrances and reception areas.

They must perform Covid-19 PCR tests in approved laboratories for any suspected cases requiring medical intervention.

In managing Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGP) in specialties like dentistry and ENT, patients should be assessed prior to any procedure to ensure they are free from Covid-19 symptoms. In dealing with confirmed Covid-19 cases, the health facility should ensure that necessary measures are taken to transfer the patient to a health facility that provides the service and is equipped with negative pressure treatment rooms to protect medical staff and prevent the spread of the virus.

The DHA already earlier this week suspended some non-urgent elective dental services and reduced the number of dental clinics across its facilities in the emirate.

Read: Dubai’s DHA suspends non-urgent elective dental services

Dental services will be provided from Sunday to Thursday from 7.30am to 9.30pm at the following DHA facilities: Al Mizhar Health Centre, Nad Al Hamar Health Centre, Al Barsha Health Centre, Al Safa Health Centre, Al Mamzar Health Centre (for children only), Rashid Hospital and Hatta Hospital, DHA said.

Furthermore, staff must wear PPEs to ensure protection of both patients as well as other staff members.

The DHA also called on health facilities to continue using telemedicine services to provide medical support, while ensuring that it does not conflict with the other provisions of its updated protocols.

The health authority clarified that telehealth services do not require a separate licence currently, provided they adhere to the authority’s standards. The DHA also called on limiting in-person training and continuous medical education activities within the health facility and encouraged using e-learning and distance learning methods as alternatives.

It warned that failure to comply against any of the directives issued in its circular would result in legal action.

As per a previous directive, the DHA suspended elective surgeries with effect from January 21 to February 19 in a bid to prioritise Covid-19 care.

Read: Dubai suspends non-urgent elective surgeries for one month

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