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Leading dentist calls for investment in healthcare technology

Bahrain: Wednesday, October 01 - 2003 @ 11:29

Dr Ali Mattar made his observations yesterday at a sector-specific seminar in support of the first-ever International Health Tourism & Holidays Exhibition at Bahrain International Exhibition Centre (September 30 – October 3 2003).

“If Bahrain is to maintain the speedy, cost-effective treatment of patients, then both the public and private healthcare sectors need to be ready to invest in new technology – and fast,” he said.

“This is particularly crucial if the Island wants to reap its share of the burgeoning inbound Health Tourism sector.”

Dr Mattar was fast to acknowledge that Computerised Healthcare – and specifically Computerised Dentistry – brings its fair share of challenges, but stated that the benefits to patients and practitioners outweighs any negative implications.

“If less pain and faster treatment is guaranteed, then pro-rata capital investment is surely the ethical responsibility of government and private practitioners alike?”

Dr Mattar, a founding member and four-year term past president of the Bahrain Dental Association, was addressing an audience of some 40-plus medical practitioners from as far afield as the United States, Scandinavia and the Sub-continent.

One overriding comment given by Dr Mattar is that time is money. He suggested that if (dental) treatment can be performed in a fraction of the time – meaning a dental cap or crown is administered from start to finish in one visit instead of the traditional three – then everybody wins : the patient, the practitioner and the economy, as patients require less time away from their workplace or school.

Looking at Bahrain’s computerised technology infrastructure, it is believed that in recent years the Island has not been as quick to adopt new healthcare technology, unlike other world and even regional markets.

However, this is looking to change if the recent news that Sulmanyia Medical Centre Accident & Emergency department has taken delivery of a state-of-the-art digital radiography (x-ray) machine stands as an indicator of uptake. The new equipment means that the time of patient diagnosis, thus time-to-treatment and A&E backlog, is reduced considerably.

Turning to dentistry, Dr Mattar’s Dental Centre in Hoora will receive the Kingdom’s first Sirona Cerec 3D Ceramic Crown Restoration machine within weeks.

This equipment, supplied by ATS, a division of Yousif bin Ahmed Kanoo Group, means patients requiring most forms of tooth restoration can now receive relatively pain-free treatment, in just one visit, instead of the traditional three.

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Wednesday, October 1- 2003 @ 11:29 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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