Minister of Health H.E. Dr Rekawt Hama Rasheed compliments Dutch family doctors Mulder and Sanaan on an excellent report on family medicine in Kurdistan.
On 8th April a presentation was given at the Directorate General of Health in Dohuk concerning the results of a feasibility study entitled “Family medicine in Kurdistan, now more than ever”, commissioned by the Director of Health Dr Nizar Esmat. The presentation was given by the experienced Dutch family doctors, Johannes Mulder and Rajab Sanaan from FMC (Family Medicine Consultants), who performed the study. The three-hour presentation and discussion of the study and subsequent project proposals provided an in-depth assessment of the current status of family medicine in Kurdistan and the impediments hindering the further development of family medicine. The study’s findings and proposals were received positively by the large audience of family physicians and government officials, which included the members of parliament Dr Abdullah Jasem and Mohammedali Taha as well as the Minister of Health and the Head of the Netherlands Embassy Liaison Office in Erbil, H.E. Jeroen Kelderhuis. The matters discussed included the successful nature of the family medicine approach in healthcare services and its effect in producing a significant decrease in referrals to health services and hospitals as well as early treatment and detection of illnesses, resulting in significant health cost reduction and improved health outcomes. Kurdistan has already made progress in this direction with the introduction of three successful start-up family medicine centres in Dohuk, Erbil and Sulaimaniya. The study’s recommendations could be used to build on this and continue the development of family medicine. Both DOH Director Dr Nizar Esmat and Minister of Health H.E. Dr Rekawt Hama Rasheed complimented the consultants on having done an excellent job and gave assurances that the project proposals would be considered for deployment at national level. The latter stressed that the KRG attaches great importance to the development of family medicine in line with the WHO targets formulated for the region.