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Posted On: 9 August 2011 06:40 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:11 pm

Initiative to change face of Qatar’s healthcare

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The initiative has been launched in the presence of HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, HE the Minister of Health Abdullah bin Khalid al-Qahtani and HE the Minister of Education Saad bin Ibrahim al-Mahmoud The Hamad Medical Corporation and Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar yesterday launched a new initiative which aims to bring globally-recognised healthcare facilities, medical education institutions and research programmes to the state. The initiative, called Academic Health System, is expected to change the face of healthcare being provided by the corporation. It was launched in the presence of HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, HE the Minister of Public Health Abdullah bin Khalid al-Qahtani and HE the Minister of Education Saad bin Ibrahim al-Mahmoud. Within the next five years and working across six themes - clinical, education, research, community engagement, human resources and information systems - the Academic Health System (AHS) seeks to establish in Qatar the best clinical care in the region; win recognition as a leading health research organisation; attract, train and develop a skilled and motivated workforce, fully equipped to support the delivery of world-class research and healthcare; develop an international reputation for the quality of staff and innovative practice; be the employer of choice for healthcare professionals and biomedical scientists in the Middle East; become a socially-engaged health system; and to adopt international best practice in information technology. There are also plans to develop a sustainable financial strategy across multiple stakeholders to support the achievement of the AHS goals within the next two years. During a partnership signing ceremony, WCMC-Q, University of Calgary Qatar (UCQ), Primary Health Care (PHC), Qatar University (QU), Sidra Medical and Research Centre and College of the North Atlantic - Qatar (CNAQ) pledged their commitment to develop quality patient care and a healthy population through academic excellence and pioneering research. Key elements of the partnership are the education of a multi-cultural, flexible workforce and future clinical, operational and scientific leaders and the practice of evidence-based healthcare. Speaking at the event, HMC managing director Dr Hanan al-Kuwari said the initiative was the result of HH Sheikha Moza’s efforts and leadership that had charted a course for national development towards an increasingly knowledge-based economy in the Qatar National Vision 2030. “We have together developed a strategy which will transform HMC and its partners into an academic health system capable of delivering the highest quality of care for our patients. As all of the academic and healthcare providers will be brought together into a single partnership working towards a shared vision and strategic plan, educational programmes will also be aligned with workforce and training needs,” she said. “Guided and advised by an international advisory board comprising senior experts in their fields, the initiative will enable the development of world-class research in specific areas, by building critical mass and facilitating the sharing of expertise and equipment. This is all working toward one end – providing the highest quality care for our patients.” Dr al-Kuwari said the AHS would address the nation’s unique healthcare needs and challenges, assessing progress against key performance indicators. She said the AHS would boost the corporation’s chances of being accredited by the US-based Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education next year. A joint steering committee, co-chaired by Dr al-Kuwari and WCMC-Q dean Dr Javiad Sheikh and with membership from UCQ, QU, CNAQ, Sidra, PHC and HMC, has been meeting regularly to develop a common vision, mission and guiding principles, she said. Also speaking, dean Sheikh said the AHS should make it attractive for medical graduates to come back to Qatar to join in creating new knowledge, using it for improving the healthcare and wellbeing of citizens and disseminating that knowledge to future generations of students. “The AHS will provide unique opportunities for inter-professional education and contribute significantly to build a skilled biomedical workforce for Qatar. This should also accelerate our pace for discoveries and developing novel therapeutic strategies.” The event’s keynote speaker, Duke University Medical Centre president and chief executive officer Dr Victor Dzau, noted that the AHS would “encourage innovation, drive for new knowledge, research that generates evidence for clinical care and environments that produce breakthroughs in care”. Dr Dzau, an expert in developing and implementing Academic Health Systems, said: “Even though your AHS is in many ways a physical entity literally based in Qatar, functionally there are no boundaries. In today’s world where medicine is becoming increasingly complex on a daily basis, AHS must form local and global partnerships in order to continuously evolve and uphold the academic medicine missions.” GulfTimes