Qatar’s health system has undergone a momentous journey of transformation in recent decades. The growth of investment in new healthcare facilities, services and technologies has transformed the health infrastructure in the country, ensuring that the health needs of the nation’s fast-growing population can be met. The human development pillar of Qatar National Vision (QNV) 2030 expresses Qatar’s ambition to develop a healthy population, physically and mentally. It is within the context of progressing closer to QNV 2030 that the National Health Strategy (NHS) 2018-2022 directs the health sector’s next period of growth, as one of eight sector strategies that comprise Qatar’s National Development Strategy (NDS) 2018-2022.
Led by the Ministry of Public Health, the NHS 2018-2022 is an all-encompassing vision for Qatar’s health sector, which sits above all other health strategies to guide the development of the healthcare system.
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Improved health of Qatar’s population, meeting the needs of existing and future generations; an integrated system that aims to achieve better health, better care, and better value for all.
With Qatar’s population growth predicted to stabilize towards the end of this decade, the need for the rapid infrastructure and capacity growth of recent years is diminished. The next priority for the health system is to align existing services and resources so they best fit the needs of the population.
To do this effectively, the Strategy has identified 12 priority areas of focus through to 2022. These include seven priority populations and five system-wide priorities, and reflect both the needs of specific population groups in Qatar, as well as health system requirements in order to deliver improved health outcomes to these groups.
Although we have made many advances in recent years, there are a number of challenges we still have to overcome.
This strategy represents a global shift in thinking and our vision is to cascade that into action in Qatar. This shift is characterized below.
At the heart of realizing our vision is the implementation of the population health approach. This approach aims to achieve health improvement through addressing the health needs of population groups rather than individuals, recognizing that factors such as gender, geography, employment status and age have a large impact upon individual health needs.
The future model of care will be patient-centered, value patient experience, and empower patients to share in responsibility for their health.
The Strategy identifies 12 priority areas. Each of these has been the subject of robust consultation, with in-depth contributions coming from all subject matter experts, across our health community. The development process has given rise to wide range of actions, proposed by the experts. The proposed actions were subjected to intense analysis and scrutiny. This has resulted in the creation of a comprehensive list of activities that will become mainstream inputs to the business planning process, across the whole system. The illustration below shows how the strategy is to be incorporated into our routine planning processes.
We have identified seven priority populations and five system-wide priorities that will guide and direct action across the health sector for the next years. These priorities reflect the specific health needs of Qatar as shown by existing figures and agreed upon through a rigorous consultation process with government and health sector stakeholders. The priority setting process also took into account internationally agreed global health priorities and best practices.
The priority populations reflect an investment in both the current and future generations and in particular, our most vulnerable individuals, including children, mothers, older people and those with special needs.
The system-wide areas focus on the health system continuum, providing a genuinely integrated model of care that strives to maintain wellness, while making sure that people receive well-coordinated care, delivered in a professional and safe environment at the appropriate level.
Her Excellency the Minister of Public Health, Dr. Hanan Mohamed Al-Kuwari, appointed 12 National Health Strategy Leads to lead the planning and implementation for the 12 Strategy priorities. A dedicated taskforce, including key stakeholders from different organizations from within and outside of the health sector, has been developed for each priority to oversee the implementation of the plans with the aim of achieving their targets by 2022.