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Dubai Healthcare City Regulator Introduces Appeals Board
(15 September 2014)

 

Dubai Healthcare City’s regulatory standards reinforced with introduction of independent Appeals Board for healthcare professionals and healthcare operators • Programme with mock Appeals Board hearing session held for DHCC-licensed professionals and operators • Four-member board introduced with local and international experts

Dubai – September 15, 2014: The Appeals Board, which provides healthcare professionals and healthcare operators with an independent system to appeal against decisions relating to licensing or complaints, was formally introduced at Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC) on September 15, 2014.

A programme was organised by Dubai Healthcare City during which an education session on the workings of the Appeals Board was held as well as a mock hearing session.

Members of the Appeals Board were formally introduced to DHCC-licensed healthcare professionals and operators during the programme.

The members are Dr Guy Fish, Senior Vice President at Fletcher Spaght, US, who is the current Chairman of the Board; Melanie Ho, Deputy Head of the Specialist & Private Client Dispute Practice, Wong Partnership, Singapore; Dr Alawi Alsheikh-Ali, Chairman, Institute of Cardiac Sciences at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, Abu Dhabi, UAE; and Dr Matthew Lohn, Senior Partner, Fieldfisher, UK. Each member was carefully considered and vetted before appointment by DHCC, and will serve for an initial term of two years. 

The Appeals Board, established in accordance with section 102 of the Governing Regulation No.1 of 2013, is a milestone for DHCC’s regulatory framework.

The introduction of the Appeals Board marks a significant juncture by DHCC, allowing a healthcare professional or a healthcare operator in the Dubai Healthcare City to appeal against decisions relating to licensing of healthcare professionals, including Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) professionals and healthcare operators, and to appeal against complaints in relation to activities carried out in DHCC.

The formation of the Board underscores the fair, transparent and equitable complaints process that is in place in DHCC for both patients and healthcare professionals, a health and wellness destination that brings together a wealth of services in healthcare, medical education and research.

As per the new Appeals Board, a physician can file a valid appeal by supporting his/her notice of appeal with new evidence which was not considered at the initial hearing and demonstrating that there is a clear possibility that the initial decision was unreasonable or unfair. An appeal may also be filed if it is supported by any evidence which was not available at the time the original ruling against the professional was made.

In accordance with section 94 of the Healthcare Professionals Regulation No. 2 of 2013, the decision of the Appeals Board is final.

Marwan Abedin, CEO, DHCC, said, The Appeals Board is part of a much broader regulatory framework that is in place to instil confidence in DHCC’s healthcare standards and our governance structure. Effective and transparent regulation is a crucial factor for any medical city. As DHCC rolls its expansion plans - against the backdrop of a growing population, medical tourism initiatives and our Phase 2 wellness concept - we are cognizant of regulation as an important driver to support long-term growth and ensure an optimum environment of care.”  

Regulation and licensure of all healthcare professionals and healthcare operators together with the handling of any complaints arising from the provision of clinical services is handled by the Center for Healthcare Planning and Quality (CPQ), an independent regulator overseen by Dubai Healthcare City Authority (DHCA), the governing body and regulator of Dubai Healthcare City.

Earlier this year, CPQ received the 2nd Edition of the Outpatient Clinic Quality Standards accreditation, valid from May 2013 to April 2017 from The International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua), a global leader in assessing the standards in healthcare safety and quality.   

The Customer Protection Unit (CPU) of CPQ is responsible for the complaints management system; each complaint is recorded, investigated and analyzed before a decision is taken for either dismissal or for disciplinary action.

Prior to the formation of the Appeals Board, the Licensing Board of CPQ would render the decision against all complaints as well as the final appealed decision. Typically complaints include medical errors, inappropriate treatment, miscommunication and negligence. This year, CPQ received 24 complaints from January to June.

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