Royal Hospital gets new hyperbaric therapy unit
June 20, 2018 | 10:14 PM
by Madiha Asif/[email protected]

Muscat: A new OMR2.3 million National Centre for Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) opened on Wednesday at the Royal Hospital. The opening ceremony was held under the patronage of Dr. Ali bin Masoud Al Sunaidi, Minister of Commerce and Industry, and Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Saidi, Minister of Health, along with a number of senior civil and

military officials.

“I am very happy at the launch of this Centre, as it adds value to our existing healthcare system, and was much needed. Previously, there was only one hyperbaric chamber at the Said Bin Sultan Naval Base (SBSNB), which is run by the Royal Navy of Oman, which did an incredible job by providing medical care to the whole country, and we are extremely grateful for their contribution,” said Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Saidi, Minister of Health.

“But now, with this National Hyperbaric Centre (NHC), we will be able to provide care to more people, as its capacity is enough for many years to come.

“Also, I am very pleased to have the fifth specialised unit at the Royal Hospital, which is the biggest hospital in the country,” Al Saidi added.

“We are very pleased to be a part of the inauguration of this centre today. It is an excellent addition to the services the country is providing to its nationals and people who are living in the Sultanate.

“It is worth mentioning that the hyperbaric oxygen therapy is the main method to treat several conditions, including blockage of blood vessels by bubbles, acute poisoning by carbon monoxide gas and decompression sickness, which affects divers,” said Captain Rukun Dr. Nasser Salim Al Hinai, Principle Medical Officer and Senior Consultant in Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine at the Royal Navy of Oman.

Dr. Aisha Al Balushi, in charge at the NHC, said that the Centre was opened in response to His Majesty the Sultan’s directions for continued national development.

“Hyperbaric medicine is one of the modern medical branches, which provides pure oxygen at an ambient pressure higher than atmospheric pressure at sea level. This treatment helps body tissues to regenerate, especially tissues that were damaged due to chronic diseases, radiation or burns,” Al Balushi said.

She added that this centre will benefit everyone in the country, as well as commercial divers and tourists who become injured during diving sessions, as it is well equipped for emergency-related cases. “The main room of the Centre has three HBOT devices, which are the latest of its kind. Two of the devices can accommodate up to 12 people and the other device is for the use of one person,” Al Balushi said.

She added that hyperbaric oxygen is used as a supplement therapy for many conditions, including diabetic foot ulcers, burn injuries, sudden hearing loss, chronic osteomyelitis and ear infections, as well as accidents.

The fully equipped Centre is built on an area of 851 square metres and consists of several facilities, including a medical records section, examination rooms, and three rooms for diagnosis and treatment.

Safety procedures

NHC, which began operating earlier this year, is compatible with all safety procedures and systems. It is equipped with fire engines, alarms, fire sensors inside the hyperbaric oxygen devices and a number of emergency exits.

“All health workers at the Center are trained at specialized centers in Germany and Austria, as well as having undergone a practical training program at the medical polyclinic in the SBSNB,” said

Al Balushi.

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