Qatar Red Crescent (QRC) has recently extended the field implementation of Phase One of its National Communicable Disease Prevention Campaign (Weqaya), funded and sponsored by the Supreme Council of Health (SCH).

As such, the campaign will continue for several months, serving some additional 5,000 expatriate workers in Qatar.

As the first event after the extension, a QRC medical affairs team conducted a health education lecture and distributed personal hygiene kits to 200 workers of Toyo-Thai Corporation Public Company Limited-Qatar, in coordination with the Royal Thai Embassy in Doha. Taking place at the beneficiaries’ workplace at Toyo-Thai Al Wukair headquarters, the distribution was attended by some company representatives, including Suchet Watchalayan, Project Manager, Projects and Proposal Division, as well as a delegation from the Thai Embassy, notably HE Piroon Laismit, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Thailand to Qatar, and a number of his aides.

The workers received an informative lecture on the importance of applying health and personal hygiene standards, common communicable diseases and how to avoid them. They were then given medical advice on health protection against workplace risks, such as sun strokes and heat exhaustion, and were taught how to administer first aid to their colleagues who might suffer any such emergencies. The lecture was delivered in Thai to ensure full understanding of the presented information and guidance, which will reflect positively on the behavior of the audience.

In addition to the lecture, the workers received 200 hygiene kits, toothbrushes, soap, and other personal hygiene items, and the recipients were trained in how to best use these contents. Weqaya t-shirts were also distributed.

The Ambassador expressed his deep thanks to QRC for its great efforts to serve expatriate workers in Qatar, improve their living conditions, and educate them about health and professional safety standards. He also appreciated the remarkable role played by QRC in humanitarian action in general.

Co-launched in August 2013 by QRC and SCH, the three-year Weqaya campaign is intended mainly to improve health and safety among expatriate workers through educational lectures, awareness fliers, and personal hygiene kits.

Phase One included lectures, workshops, and awareness courses for 10,000 workers from 40 companies and 21,000 visitors of the QRC-run and SCH-funded Workers’ Health Centers. Moreover, the campaign distributed 5,000 hygiene kits, with training in how to use them, and 10,000 brochures and fliers on the most prevalent infections and health problems, such as Coronavirus, Ebola virus, influenza, tuberculosis, and heat exhaustion. Other phases are currently underway and will cover various medical topics, like psychological health, professional safety, and health education on non-communicable diseases.

This prolonged programme is inspired by QRC’s commitment to social development and health promotion in the Qatari society. With lower disease rates particularly among workers, there will be less demand on healthcare services and fewer sick leaves. This in turn will translate into shorter absenteeism and higher productivity, contributing to the ambitious economic and social development strategy under Qatar National Vision 2030.