By Ed Attwood
Qatar Foundation to start phased opening of outpatient clinic, project originally planned to open in 2011
One of the Gulf’s largest healthcare megaprojects is finally set to open its doors to patients in May.
The Doha-based Sidra Medical and Research Center, which is being funded by the Qatar Foundation to the tune of $7.9 billion, has announced that its outpatient clinic will undergo a phased opening from 1 May.
Originally scheduled to begin operations in 2011, the Sidra project will include a high-tech hospital and medical research centre, mainly focusing on the treatment of women and children.
However, Sidra has faced repeated delays in recent years. In 2014, the Qatar Foundation sacked the two joint venture partners responsible for building the project.
In December last year, reports in Qatar suggested the facility was planning to lay off 200 jobs as part of “right-sizing” plans.
The launch of Sidra’s outpatient clinic will initially start with the opening of dermatology, paediatric general surgery consultation and obstetrics clinics, the firm said in a press statement. As a referral centre, it will not offer emergency services.
Sidra also said that it planned to offer more services at the outpatient clinic throughout the course of this year, including “neonatology consultation, developmental paediatrics, child and adolescent mental health, Ear Nose and Throat (ENT), pre-operative anaesthetic assessment and preparation”.
“The opening of the Outpatient Clinic is an important first step in the phased opening of Sidra Medical and Research Center. This marks the beginning of our journey to establish Sidra as a state-of-the-art hospital and research center,” said Sidra vice chairperson Lord Darzi.
It remains unclear when the rest of the Sidra project will open to the public.