Posted on May 06, 2015

The Hamad Trauma Center at Hamad General Hospital (HGH) is commemorating the third UN Global Road Safety Week (GRSW) by signing a Declaration for the Road Safety of Children in Qatar. In conjunction with the Ministry of Interior (MOI), the National Committee on Traffic Safety (NCTS) and the Supreme Council of Health (SCH), the team and other stakeholders will sign the declaration to do five key actions to make children safer on the roads.

  • Serve as a role model by always using a seatbelt on every trip I take in a car/vehicle.
  • Observe the school zone speed limit of 30 km/h when I am driving around schools.
  • Transport children, under the age of 10 years, in the back row of my vehicle and restrained using the appropriate car seat or restraint system.
  • Refrain from driving when I am impaired by fatigue, medications, drugs and/or alcohol.
  • Avoid using any form of mobile phone, electronic devices or serious distractions while driving.

The GRSW is a global event, held from 4-10 May 2015, organized in the framework of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 by its lead agency, the World Health Organization. This year, the theme is ‘Children and Road Safety: #SaveKidsLives’. According to Dr. Hassan Al-Thani, Head of Trauma Services at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) some of the “most important work” to ensure safer roads must be done outside the operating theater.

“We understand that some of our most important work must be done outside of the emergency and operating rooms of the Hamad Trauma Center,” he said adding: “therefore, strengthening our internal partnerships within HMC is the next important step as we continue to align our efforts to improve road safety in Qatar with those of the NCTS.’

Qatar Airways HQ 300x250

Dr. Rafael Consunji, Director of the HMC Injury Prevention Program, summarized the reasons for commemorating this week saying: “Motor vehicle crashes lead to more than 200 serious injuries and 35 deaths to children in Qatar. The fact that nearly 90 percent of these deaths happen at the scene, and are not treated at HMC hospitals highlights the importance of preventing these injuries from happening in the first place.”

Key stakeholders for the health of children from HMC convened to present ongoing efforts to improve the child road safety in Qatar. Dr. Ruben Peralta, Lead Principal Investigator of the Qatar Foundation’s National Priority Research Program (NPRP) grant titled: Young Kids in Safe Seats (Y-KISS) presented the objectives of the grant, citing the important contributions from the Primary Health Care Corporation. He thanked the Qatar Foundation for realizing the importance of the safety of child passengers in Qatar as a national priority issue.

During the stakeholders meeting, Dr. Khalid Abdulnoor Saifeldeen, Director of the Hamad International Training Center and the Kulluna for Health and Safety Campaign, described their award-winning Child Passenger Safety Technician Course. Dr. Guy Brisseau, Head of Pediatric Surgery at Sidra Medical and Research Center, presented a summary of the contributions of the HMC-Sick Kids Partnership to improving the quality of Child Transport Heath Research in Qatar, on behalf of Executive Clinical Lead for the Office of Corporate Child Health Planning at HMC, Dr. Abdullah Al-Kaabi.

The event was capped by a symbolic signing of a signboard to indicate the commitment of the participants to the goals of the GRSW and encourage other members of the HMC community and the general public to do the same.