Posted on December 22, 2018

The General Directorate of Traffic, represented by the Traffic Awareness Department, signed with Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Hamad Trauma Center a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on scientific partnership and cooperation and the prevention of road traffic injuries.

The MoU was signed by Director of Traffic Awareness Department at the General Directorate of Traffic Lt Col. Mohammad Radhi Al Hajri and Head of Hamad Trauma Center, Dr Sheikh Hassan Al Thani. The MoU aims to promote communication and cooperation between both sides on awareness about traffic safety in the community and the most vulnerable groups in the country. In addition, the MoU aims to extend information on risks to those involved in awareness programs, the prevention of injuries caused by traffic accidents and to spread up-to-date and accurate traffic safety information in cooperation with the media.

The MoU also aims to exchange best practices on traffic safety in Qatar in the fields of monitoring, databases, prevention, and handling injuries caused by traffic accidents with various State entities. Qatar leads the Gulf region in traffic safety. The roads in Qatar have become much safer over the past decade due the efforts taken by concerned authorities. The road accident mortality rate has fallen from 14 deaths per 100,000 people in 2013 to 5.4 deaths per 100,000 people in 2017. This rate is well below the global average of 17.4 deaths per 100,000 people and in high-income countries of 9.2 per 100,000 people, despite the high number of vehicles and drivers in the country.

The MoU also provides for the exchange of information and data in the areas of concern of the Hamad Center for Accident Injuries and Traffic Awareness Department, in accordance with the policy of access and use of the National Accident Injury Data. It also provides for the standardization of scientific terminology in the field of statistics and awareness between the two sides, in addition to the exchange of information on the evaluation of activities and events, measuring the impact of awareness before and after implementation, as well as organising joint lectures in the field of diseases that hinder driving and methods of prevention.

The cooperation also covers conducting research and issuing joint publications to improve existing practices with respect to traffic safety in the State, according to the requirements of the research ethics rules issued by the Institutional Review Board, medical research centers and HMC. The MoU also aims to extend invitations to employees to hold talks and exchange views and expertise. Head of Trauma at Hamad Trauma Centre, Dr Sheikh Hassan Al Thani pointed to the importance of the MoU in reducing the number of accidents and considering it as a step forward in achieving zero road traffic fatalities, pointing to the importance of information as a strategy for building an integrated health system with the General Directorate of Traffic.

Colonel Mohammed Radhi Al Hajri stressed that the MoU strengthens the links between the General Directorate of Traffic and Hamad Medical Corporation in the fields of awareness of road users, which raises the level of safety, and the formulation of policies and strategies that reduce fatal accidents. He said the roles of the General Directorate of Traffic and Hamad Medical Corporation are integrated, explaining that the injuries caused by traffic accidents are handled by the Hamad Medical Corporation which takes the necessary medical measures. He also pointed to the costs incurred by the State for treatment and rehabilitation.

Colonel Al Hajri said the partnership in awareness raising and information exchange helps reaching the goal of achieving a zero road traffic fatalities and reducing the expenses of treating the victims of these accidents.