Blaming staff shortage for the situation, several people say the endless wait at the emergency also means putting their lives at risk.
"I thought 'emergency' meant 'immediately', but the minimum wait that I have had to endure has been more than one-and-a-half hours," said Laxman S, who took his child to the hospital after he suspected he had a fractured limb.
"My child was in severe pain and we were cradling his arm. The nurse came for an initial check-up only 15 minutes after we arrived. She then disappeared only to return with a doctor almost an hour later," he pointed out.
He said they were then taken to a cabin to wait further. "We were again kept waiting for sometime. Meanwhile, my child was cringing with pain. Finally, we were attended to and discharged after over an hour," he said.
When contacted, John Burns, CEO of Al Qasimi Hospital, denied the allegation. "It's not that we are not attending to patients due to a staff shortage. It may be because the patient does not need immediate attention," he said.
Burns explained further: "If a patient's illness is not considered serious by the doctors, then the patients with more serious problems are given priority."
However, some of the patients refuted Burns' claim, saying they had seen serious patients kept waiting for long.
Said Mohammed Ali, describing his experience: "My daughter had fallen and had cut her chin. She was bleeding profusely and it was the middle of the night. When we reached the Al Qasimi Hospital, we had to wait for over an hour before the doctor came to attend her. Till then, we only had a cloth to keep to her wound to check the bleeding."The Sharjah resident added: "The hospital really needs to improve its services."
This step is expected to create around 12,000 jobs annually for UAE nationals in 2024 and 2025
Hosts tighten grip on Day 3 of first Test against New Zealand