How Kuwait’s oldest private hospital has maintained its enviable reputation
A household name in Kuwait, the New Mowasat Hospital in Salmiya has been offering premium medical services to patients for over 50 years. Established in 1965, the facility is 27,000 square meters in size with 100 beds. The hospital is plush and luxurious, with top-of-the-range equipment to serve all types of patient except for those requiring cardiology-related treatment (although this is set to change). Mowasat Healthcare Company, owner of the hospital, is a publically-traded company on the Kuwait Stock Exchange.
The hospital considers itself a champion in caring for the community, committing itself to providing high-quality care, the highest possible levels of comfort for patients, and the maintenance of the incredibly high standards the company is known for. Its core values promote a positive working environment, which benefits both staff and patients. New Mowasat Hospital’s employees are considered the most valuable resource of the business, as the link between the brand and the client, and all of the hospital’s great achievements are made due to their talent and dedication.
New Mowasat Hospital’s values system is known as C.A.R.E. – Care & Compassion, Accountability, Respect, and Excellence & Ethics. Compassion is about understanding the needs of others and caring accordingly; Accountability refers to staff taking personal responsibility for their own actions and provided services, and prioritizing patient wellness above all else; Respect is about giving colleagues and patients the dignity they deserve the require, and ensuring that they feel valued; and Excellence and Ethics includes details about job dedication, the best possible customer service, and accomplishing goals with a positive attitude.
The Board, CEO, Hospital Management Committee are equally involved in ensuring that we stand by our Vision, Mission and Values at New Mowasat Hospital. One of the men behind the implementation of this system of values is Hospital Director Dr. Alexander Varghese, a dentist by profession, completed his Masters in Hospital Services Management at Apollo Hospitals, Chennai, India in association with Charles Sturt University in New South Wales and delved into managerial roles upon graduating.
Dr Varghese is new to New Mowasat Hospital, but is well aware of the importance of this particular facility to Kuwait and its citizens. Its motto is ‘Caring for Generations’, and Dr Varghese confirms that the hospital is extremely family-orientated.
“It’s a family-owned business, which is publically listed and started by the grandfather 50 years ago,” he explains. “After 25 years it really blossomed into a 100-bed hospital. Members of the family who own the business were born in this hospital. Our Medical Director has been here 35 years, and various royal family have been born here because we were the first private hospital in Kuwait. Because of that we’ve leveraged a lot of good will and a good name for ourselves. The words ‘Mowasat’ and ‘hospital’ are synonymous with one another here. There are other private hospitals now but we have the reputation. I guess we have strong family values, with four or five generations of patients coming to us.”
As if its word-of-mouth reputation wasn’t enough, New Mowasat Hospital is bolstered officially by various accreditations. These are internationally recognised evaluations of service, clinical excellence and quality which act as guarantees of excellence, assuring customers and prospective employees alike of the hospital’s superiority. Measuring clinical outcomes and therapies and treatments is a tough job and goes on in the background of good ethical organizations and New Mowasat stands testimony to the that Clinical Excellence and Ethics.
New Mowasat Hospital has thrice been surveyed and recommended by the Joint Commission International Accreditation, in 2010, 2014 and most recently in 2017, for the latter year achieving 100 percent compliance in all standards related to Quality Improvement & Patient Safety Governance & Leadership and Patient Education, and 97 percent in all other standards of best practice. In 2008 the hospital received accreditation from Accreditation Canada International, and in 2011 and 2014 from the updated Accreditation Canada Qmentum International, rated Platinum and Diamond respectively. Diamond is the highest possible level of accreditation by this particular survey team, proving New Mowasat Hospital’s dedication to continuous improvement, clinical excellence and patient care.
“We’ve had accreditation bodies coming in for nine years, and the surveys are done to prove that our protocols and practices are on par with the best hospitals in the world. Kuwait is a dynamic and rich country and because of the size we don’t have many of these institutions, but elsewhere in the Middle East and the rest of the world, accreditation is important and holds a lot of value in the eyes of the public and the regulators. Our standards are important to us.”
Being here makes a lot of financial sense, so we’ve ended up with a multi-cultural society due to staff and patient population from across the globe and at the hospital we have around 22 nationalities, most of which are Middle Eastern or Asian. But that means we have to standardize things; you can’t just let people do what they think is right because it’s best practice in their country – that doesn’t work. It makes sense to us here for everybody to work in a Kuwaiti way, and establishes a solid working environment.” That benchmarks itself to the best in the world
This even extends to local-specific medical specialties. One particular focus at New Mowasat Hospital is IVF treatment, for which it hires some of the best professionals in the world.“In the Middle East like everywhere else not having kids is considered a big issue,” Dr Varghese explains. “People who can’t have kids don’t want to go public about it, so they come for discreet IVF treatment. It’s a taboo subject that people don’t like to talk about, but we’ve had the systems in place to do this for about 17 years. We have very well qualified doctors; it’s very delicate, specialist work and it has to be perfect. It’s not like having a cold or a fever – it takes a lot more time and it’s easier to go wrong. We’ve got a very strong team of IVF doctors who have been with us for a decade. We have high success rates, particularly for patients between 30 and 40 years old when they are at peak health.” And our success rates are the best in the region.
While New Mowasat Hospital has had its limitations – such as the lack of interventional cardiology & cardiac surgery treatments – it is looking to include these in its roster of services in the near future. It plans to implement these along with a focus on nephrology, neurology, intensive acre and others in the next two-to-three years, and most of all, maintain its status as the number one Kuwaiti private healthcare provider.
Our four key pillars are:
- Patient Care, Safety & Continuous Improvement;
- People Development;
- Financial Performance & Growth;
- and Appropriate use of technology.
Dr Varghese concludes: “There is room for further expansion, and we are working hard to fully stabilize and reinvent our current position and race towards the future. The Kuwait market doesn’t grow like other parts of the world, because there isn’t a big populace going in and out. You’ve got to maintain what you have and make smart investments.”