Muscat – The Sultanate of Oman has proposed the integration of specialised health services and launch of telemedicine clinics for rare diseases in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries.

These proposals were made at the ninth meeting of the Committee of Ministers of Health of GCC and the 86th General Conference of GCC and Yemen, aiming to enhance the complementarity in specialised services among the GCC nations.

By doing so, all GCC countries can afford to access any Gulf specialised centre’s services while assuring quality. The speciality of these centres include corneal and organ transplantation, toxicology, joint replacement, diagnostics and therapeutic intervention.

The proposed integration aims to send eligible patients to centres of excellence within the GCC, facilitating the exchange of expertise and multi-centre studies in the region.

Additionally, the meeting broached Oman’s proposal to activate telemedicine clinics for rare diseases. This initiative seeks to establish a joint electronic platform for all GCC countries, enabling physicians to discuss and monitor various rare or unresponsive medical cases, enhancing regional medical collaboration.

H E Dr Hilal Ali al Sabti, Oman’s Minister of Health, emphasised the importance of this integration, noting its potential to strengthen health systems and elevate the quality of services for the Gulf community.

This unified approach could positively impact the rapidly growing health sector in the GCC, as indicated by the growth in the number of government health centres, private pharmacies and hospital beds in the region between 2016 and 2021.

The meeting highlighted the shared commitment among GCC countries to bolster cooperation, promote technological advancements and enhance the healthcare sector’s overall efficiency and effectiveness in the region.

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