Interview with Dato Dr. Isham Jaafar

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JPMC is the first hospital in the country to have been accredited by the Joint Commission International (JC I), one of the world’s most prestigious bodies in the medical industry. The significant role that JPMC plays contributing to Brunei’s health industry must be acknowledged. We spoke to the Dato Dr Isham Jaafar, who assumes the roles of both the Executive Director and the Medical Director- about JPMC’s proud accomplishments, its functions and its vision which is in line with the country’s Wawasan 2035.

Tell us about JPMC’s role in helping to keep the people of Brunei fit and healthy.
Our mission is to lead in excellent quality and compassionate care whilst providing the best ethical healthcare practice for our patients. JPMC is determined to provide for the health demands of the community with a newer and more effective approach. Our efforts go beyond the boundaries of what our team is actively involved in – various health awareness initiatives, including providing free health talks to various agencies and companies in the country as well as through corporate social responsibility (CSR) programmes.

We understand that our patients deserve excellent care and should be rewarded with facilities that offer comprehensive services which meet their health needs. JPMC is backed by its highly qualified and committed multi-disciplinary medical team that utilises the stateof-the art technology medical equipment.

Our team does not just provide the appropriate care for the patients but also play an integral part in the patients’ recovery process. Our aim is to become a more accessible health care provider and we are working towards achieving this goal.

Apart from delivering a well-equipped healthcare system, JPMC is also known for its comprehensive and modern gym facilities. We have a 25-metre lap pool, steam, sauna and Jacuzzi room; and offer circuit training as well as tailored fitness programmes designed by our personal fitness trainers. At present we have over 250 regular gym members and the number is increasing daily.

Equipped with the world class medical facilities and practitioners, JPMC would be a natural option for regional patients seeking medical support. How is JPMC doing in terms of promoting medical tourism in Brunei?
Alhamdulillah, JPMC has progressed significantly in the last few years. Some improvements include the establishment of new medical services; the recruitment of more doctors and nurses in specialised fields and also of allied health professionals. During these last few years, we have also been privileged to be involved with the setting up of the Brunei Cancer Centre and the Brunei Neuroscience, Stroke and Rehabilitation Centre. These facilities together with the already established Gleneagles JPMC Cardiac centre, make our medical facilities comparable to any other medical facilities in the developed world. And we must be thankful for Allah SWT blessings and the generosity of our beloved ruler, His Majesty Sultan Hj Hassanal Bolkiah Muizzaddin Waddaulah, these health treatments are provided free to all citizens. This shows that the welfare of the citizens is always in His Majesty’s heart. We are very fortunate and we should appreciate this, as it is second to none in the world.

Alhamdulillah, JPMC with its wide spectrum of health care services including specialised and surgical healthcare services certainly attracts several regional patients to our outpatient department including those requiring dental services. However it must be emphasised that what we are doing is in line with the vision of the government towards achieving universal healthcare towards Wawasan 2035. We try to ensure that we are complementing the services provided by the Ministry of Health and hence avoid any duplication. We have worked very closely with the Ministry of Health to ensure that our goals are achieved.

One of the most recent initiatives towards expanding our services to promote medical tourism was our participation at the B IMP-E A G A Tourism Trade Expo 2014 held at the International Convention Centre ( ICC) in Brunei. We will also be planning various initiatives in 2015 with the relevant agencies to reach out and promote medical tourism in the country.

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Dato Dr Isham Jaafar & Team

What are some of the trends in health and fitness that we can learn from other countries?
In the future we hope to provide a more conducive environment for our patients comfort. We have seen various top notch medical service providers outside of the country that provide exceptional five-star hospitality and comfort for their patients throughout their stay in hospital. Various processes and work still need done before we can realise JPMC’s true potential to lead as a medical services provider in the country, but we believe we are definitely on the right track.

What can we expect from JPMC in 2015?
JPMC is the first hospital in Brunei Darussalam to be accredited by the Joint Commission International (JC I). This accreditation is the world’s most prestigious bodies providing international accreditation services to hospitals. This accreditation will ensure patients’ safety and rights are protected and various processes are done to ensure continuous quality improvement within the hospital. JPMC continues to implement various initiatives to improve its services and provide the best in medical services in the country.

There are a number of projects in the pipeline which will help us to achieve our goal of leading in the healthcare industry in Brunei Darussalam. These projects include increasing our medical team by introducing more doctors and nurses in specialised fields and expanding our healthcare services to cater for more patients.

We will also be introducing our newly refurbished social media website which will feature a more user friendly and comprehensive one stop information provider about JPMC’s wide range of services.

Additionally, we will also be actively participating in various medical tourism initiatives in and outside of the country throughout 2015.

This article was published in the Jan-Mar 2015 issue of Inspire Magazine. Download it here!