Complex Made Simple

Qatari expert on quest to continue to improve the quality of patient care

Recent improvements also include the implementation of a highly advanced, state-of-the-art incident reporting system

Executive Director of the Corporate Quality and Patient Safety Program at Hamad Medical Corporation, Dr. Moza Al Ishaq, PhD, is the first certified Root Cause Analyst in Qatar who is using her expertise to train local and regional healthcare professionals in the area of risk management to enhance patient safety within a hospital environment.

“Root Cause Analysis (RCA) is an innovative quality improvement approach that involves the investigation of the ‘root cause’ of an incident or error in order to develop the most effective solutions and minimize potential risks for patients,” Dr. Al Ishaq said.

This extensive quality improvement process looks at how a particular problem occurs so preventive strategies can then be developed to prevent it from reoccurring. “Having this sophisticated procedure as one of our key improvement approaches has definitely contributed to a stronger culture of safety within our facilities,” she said.

One of a cadre of Qatari clinicians in leadership roles at HMC, Dr. Al Ishaq has pioneered several of HMC’s risk management initiatives and staff training programs in addition to developing the Root Cause Analysis approach. These include the Risk Assessment and Risk Register, the Patient Safety Training Program, and the HMC Quality Coaching Program that focus on incorporating best practices to aid the delivery of the safest, most effective and most compassionate care to patients.

With the support of multi-disciplinary teams from HMC’s Risk Management Department and many medical teams, Dr. Al Ishaq has led numerous quality improvement workshops for hundreds of staff members across HMC to encourage staff to be proactive in patient safety.

“We are dedicated to developing leaders at every level of the organization through ongoing training on the core values of integrity, collaboration, and innovation. With this approach, each member of staff understands his or her contribution to improving each and every one of our patients’ healthcare experience,” she said.

Recent improvements also include the implementation of a highly advanced, state-of-the-art incident reporting system. Dr. Al Ishaq took the lead on this significant project which marked a tremendous improvement since 2011, involving a shift from a paper-based to a web-based system.

“The application of this innovative system has bolstered Qatar’s position at the forefront of healthcare transformation. We are the second healthcare provider in the region and the seventh in the world to implement this system,” Dr. Al Ishaq said.

The first Qatari to graduate from the Partners Healthcare International Fellowship and also the first Qatari to become an Improvement Advisor under a program jointly offered by HMC and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), Dr. Al Ishaq currently supervises a number of quality improvement projects and is an ardent advocate for patient safety.

She is involved in research work that focuses on care delivery systems, the implementation of system change, and clinical transformation in healthcare and improvement in the quality of patient care. Dr. Al Ishaq also mentors healthcare professionals under the HMC/IHI Fellowship Program and the IHI Open School alumni.

Stressing the importance of Qatari youth taking up a career in healthcare, Dr. Al Ishaq said, “With rising demand in the healthcare industry, I believe it is fundamental for Qatari youths to consider a healthcare profession. It is a fulfilling career, which provides countless opportunities to make a difference to people’s lives.”