BEIRUT: Health Minister Jamil Jabak Tuesday opened Lebanon’s first ministry-contracted medical lab and radiography center, where patients can undergo tests paid for by the state.
“In the past, doctors would diagnose illnesses with a stethoscope and maybe by requesting a few lab tests or scans,” Jabak said during the opening event.
“Now the tables have been turned, and laboratories and radiographs are at the forefront of diagnoses,” hesaid according to a statement from his ministry.
The facility, the American Diagnostic Center, which is located in Beirut’s southern suburbs, includes an up-to-date lab for examinations as well as radiography facilities.
Jabak said the center “exceeds even the ministry’s requirements.”
Among the center’s services, it is able to examine samples of spinal cord and joint fluids, and is equipped with a highly sensitive PET/CT scanner that produces detailed images of any part of the body with minimal doses of radioactivity.
Patients will also be able to take tests involving blood, urine and stool to identify disease or infection, and receive diagnoses.
The lab results and radiographs from the center will be paid for by the ministry, Jabak said.
The center’s location on the outskirts of the capital is strategically important, he said, as the facility will be accessible for all of the city’s more than 1 million residents.
The goal of the center is threefold, says Dr. Akram Shamas, the ADC's director: promoting patient care, introducing better technology than was used previously and hiring a highly competent and specialized staff.
“With the new technology we will reduce the personal suffering of patients ... and we promise to strive to continue moving forward,” Shamas added.
MP Assem Araji, who heads Parliament’s Public Health, Labor and Social Affairs Committee, said that the quality of the examinations and radiographs that will be conducted at the center “helps greatly in ensuring correct and accurate treatment.”
“In addition,” he said, “conducting examinations at such advanced centers reduces the rate of hospitalization and thus the cost of hospital health bills” to the state.