Q Life Magazine Issue 8 - Page 12

Issue 8 DR. ABDULLATIF AL KHAL Facing the COVID-19 puzzle Dr. Abdullatif Al Khal, one of Qatar’s leading experts in infectious diseases, describes how the country’s world-class healthcare system has helped them achieve one of the lowest death rates in the world. “ Studying microbes and the spectrum of diseases they can cause is a bit like solving a puzzle – when you find the solution you can impact on so many lives,” says Dr. Abdullatif Al Khal, Chair of the National Strategic Group on COVID-19, Head of the Infectious Diseases Division at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), and Director of the HMC’s Department of Medical Education. However, he believes he’s in the perfect place to do just that. “There’s been no greater time to be working in Qatar’s healthcare sector,” Dr. Al Khal explains. Dr. Al Khal watched as Qatar’s healthcare system quickly adapted to the pandemic and made changes to long-standing practices with ease. “Myself and my colleagues across the healthcare system have been working tirelessly to ensure measures are in place to limit the spread of the virus and provide high-quality care for those people who need it,” Dr. Al Khal says. “But in times of pressure the true character of people comes through and I am immensely proud of everyone who has risen to the challenge.” Dr. Al Khal credits three key areas of Qatar’s strategy that has allowed for the country to have one of the lowest death rates from COVID-19 in the world. He firstly cites Qatar’s significantly expanded hospital capacity, which included tripling its intensive care capacity. 12