KSMC has grown to become one of the leading tertiary care facilities in the Kingdom—while it is now also being incorporated into the Riyadh First Healthcare Cluster. What is envisioned by the organizational restructuring?
In total, the cluster has around 16,000 employees, of which 9,200 are with KSMC—around 60% of the employee volume. In addition, around 60% of the care is provided within our facility. The task of the cluster is to better align primary, secondary, and tertiary care and to improve our services in terms of access, quality, and patient experience. Within the cluster, KSMC is the tertiary care facility, surrounded by a secondary care hospital and a number of primary healthcare centers.
How have you succeeded in putting all facilities under one cluster?
The first thing we have to know is that whenever you facilitate access for the patient. You need to facilitate the service and utilize the resources at the cluster level. For example, a patient that is waiting for a CT scan or for a surgery has now more options. We are also focusing on preventative care, as Saudi Arabia has a high rate of non-communicable diseases, such as diabetes. We are trying to prevent communicable diseases as well, in part through public awareness campaigns. Our staff also receive guidance from our infections disease experts.
KSMC partnered with Alfred University in Australia for the development of a trauma care center. How is the effort progressing?
Collaboration started in 2013. It is an excellent opportunity for everyone to learn how the system of trauma works; management, pathway, and guidelines. The bulk of trauma cases were usually referred to KSMC, as we are an open door for all the hospitals in the Kingdom. We also accept patients who arrive in our emergency department. Achieving this at the level that you feel is satisfactory and at the same time meets standards is challenging for everybody. Alfred University helped a lot to organize trauma service at KSMC. We have four or five objectives wherein each branch of these goals have their own sub objectives. In February 2019, the first ever Saudi trauma conference was held in Riyadh. This conference reached out to all healthcare providers across the Kingdom. We had 45 speakers from the Kingdom and the Gulf. Experts from around the world were invited too. Attendees at the conference discussed all the solutions, risk factors, and what has already been done to improve trauma services in the Kingdom. We have trauma training, which has been ongoing for the last two years. We do training for staff with physicians and nurses who are skilled in dealing with trauma cases. The other thing which is important is the registry of trauma cases, where you can document all cases from major to minor. This will help give you a clear vision of what has been done and what needs to be done to prevent and avoid all the morbidity, i.e. sickness, and mortality issues related to trauma.
What are your ambitions for development over the coming years?
We need to expand the clusters we already have in Riyadh; that will help in a big way. The support we have from the minister, the CEO of the cluster, and all other concerned parties is already there. We have a cardiac service, which began in 2018. The case load was more than what was expected. We have a lot of procedures; however, we are planning now to perform cardiac service around the clock, rather than only during daytime working hours. We also want to add cardiac surgery to the cluster. It has not been available for a long time at our hospital. The cardiac service will expand both on the medical side and the surgical side, which will start soon. We are also performing ear implants for people who have difficulty hearing. We may need to expand the service according to the need. The bariatric service is already established.