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Kuwaiti Ministry of Health committed to improving dental services

• Kuwait’s Ministry of Health is prioritizing dental care with a focus on increased access and reduced wait times.

• This includes staffing with 85% Kuwaiti dentists, opening new clinics, extending working hours, and implementing a daily appointment system.

• The Ministry is also introducing specialized services like children’s clinics and clinics for people with special needs.

The Ministry of Health is committed to improving dental services across the country, according to Dr. Ahmed Asad, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health for Dental Services. In an interview with Al-Rai newspaper, Dr. Asad highlighted the ministry’s efforts to increase the number of Kuwaiti dentists, introduce new services, and expand access to dental care.

85% of dentists in public sector are Kuwaiti

Dr. Asad stated that 85% of dentists in the public sector are Kuwaiti nationals. This percentage is steadily increasing, with around 77 dentists being sent abroad annually to pursue specialized studies in world-renowned universities.

Digital transformation

As part of its digital transformation efforts, the ministry has linked patient electronic records between primary healthcare centers and specialized dental centers, as well as between specialized dental centers and their affiliated general hospitals. This linkage facilitates access to patient health data and medical history, streamlines medication dispensing, and organizes various medical procedures for patients.

Addressing appointment delays

Dr. Asad explained that the ministry has successfully addressed the issue of appointment delays in dental clinics by implementing a three-pronged approach. First, the cumulative appointment system was replaced with daily appointments, ensuring that patients are seen on time and minimizing waiting times. Second, the number of clinics has been increased through recent openings of new centers and clinics. Third, working hours have been extended by operating some centers on a two-shift basis (morning and evening) to accommodate more patients and reduce wait times.

Key projects

The ministry has inaugurated several new dental projects, including comprehensive dental departments with clinics, radiology, laboratories, and sterilization units in Sabah Al-Ahmad Health Center – E, Al-Wafra Residential Health Center, Al-Sadeeq Health Center, Ali Thanyan Al-Ghanem Health Center (Al-Abdali), Al-Muta’ala Health Center N11, West Abdullah Al-Mubarak Health Center, Abu Fatira Residential Health Center, and the dental department at Al-Fahaheel Health Center for the treatment of children’s teeth. Additionally, dental emergency services have been introduced for Sabah Al-Ahmad Residential City and surrounding areas.

Extended working hours

Working hours have been extended in the dental department at Al-Qasr Health Center in Jahra Governorate to 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Working hours have also been extended in other centers by operating them in the evenings to meet the needs of residents and reduce waiting times. This includes Binid Al-Qar Specialized Centers, Jaber Al-Ahmad Specialized Centers, and the operation of dental emergencies for Sabah Al-Ahmad Residential City and surrounding areas at Sabah Al-Ahmad Health Center – A during the night from 10 pm to 6 am, seven days a week.

Prominent dental services offered

The ministry plans to expand the experience of opening more dental emergency clinics for children, following the successful launch of a children’s dental emergency clinic at Jahra Specialized Center, the opening of a children’s dental emergency clinic at Farwaniya Specialized Dental Center, and a dental emergency clinic in Mubarak Al-Kabeer Governorate. The ministry also plans to expand the experience of dental clinics for people with special needs, following the establishment of such clinics at Jaber Al-Ahmad Specialized Center.

New dental services introduced

Among the newly introduced services is the opening of a specialized center for children’s dental treatment at Jahra Specialized Center, with 52 clinics providing comprehensive dental services for children from birth to 16 years of age.

Importance of the dental services at Jahra Hospital

To facilitate services for patients who require oral and dental care and have difficulty being transported outside the hospital, dental treatment has been introduced for bedridden adults and children. A dental clinic has also been opened to treat patients with communicable diseases at the old Jahra Hospital, in addition to a dental emergency clinic at Jahra Specialized Center for children’s dental treatment, which operates during official holidays and weekends.

School Health programs

The ministry has assumed responsibility for providing oral and dental health school programs in health areas (Hawally, Ahmadi, Farwaniya, and Jahra) following the expiration of contracts with private companies that previously provided these services. This transition ensures the continuity of service provision at the highest levels.

Appointment of medical staff with new openings

Dr. Asad affirmed that the current number of dentists is sufficient and that services are being provided according to the best required standards. However, with the continuous openings and expansions in dental services, there is a need to appoint new medical staff to match these expansions.

Projects under preparation and follow-up

Preparatory and follow-up work is underway for further openings in the dental sector, including the Adan Specialized Dental Center, which will be built on an area of 8,000 square meters, and the Amiri Hospital Dental Center, which will be built on an area of 13,400 square meters.

Projects coming soon

Dr. Asad revealed that several projects are nearing completion, including Sabah Al-Ahmad Specialized Dental Center, Al-Mutlaa Specialized Dental Center, Al-Hettan Health Center, and Nasser Abdulmohsen Al-Saeed Center for Children’s Dental Treatment.

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