Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP), Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) and Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar (WCMC-Q) marked their new collaboration project— Qatar Robotic Surgery Centre (QRSC)—with academics and surgeons from Imperial College London at a pre-launch ceremony held at the Royal Academy of Engineering.
The partnership, QRSC, aims to advance healthcare research in both the UK and Qatar, and seeks to become a focal point for world class expertise in the fast-growing field of medical robotics and robotic surgery.
The event was held in the presence of H H Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al Missned, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, and other prominent UK and Qatari dignitaries. The collaboration represents the ongoing partnerships between Qatar Foundation and top universities around the world to provide opportunities for students, researchers and academics to learn in competitive and pioneering environments.
QRSC aims to become a platform for technological development of medical robotics and to promote clinical application of the technology in the Middle East.
To realise its objectives, QRSC will act as a demonstration platform for advanced surgical technologies with state-of-the-art equipment, laparoscopic simulators and 3D telecast capabilities.
QRSC will also offer a broad range of robotic training programmes for surgeons, healthcare professionals and scientists. Finally, the centre will perform and stimulate technology development in medical robotics.
The centre will allow surgeons from the Middle East to be trained in the technology, with live demonstrations as well as live-link training sessions, promoting the transfer of expertise between the UK and Qatar. A team of doctors from HMC and WCMC-Q were trained in the technology at the Imperial College London.
“The Academy wholeheartedly welcomes this development,” said Lord Browne of Madingley, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering, opening the ceremony. “It builds on a most effective partnership which has such a strong track record in developing robotic surgery. The new centre provides an excellent opportunity to develop and apply this key area of medical engineering for the benefit of patients around the world.”
Lord Ara Darzi of Imperial College London, one of the first surgeons to operate using the robotic system, has been appointed as Chairman of the QRSC International Surgery Panel. The panel membership also includes Professor Gunag-Zhong Yang of Imperial College London who is the chief scientific officer for the centre and a number of distinguished international surgeons.
“The application of robots into surgical practice is in its infancy and we envisage the collaboration will drive innovation in education and training, research and clinical practice,” said Lord Darzi
Dr Hanan Al Kuwari, Managing Director of HMC, discussed the different phases of the collaborative project and the progress in the field of robotic surgery thus far in Qatar. “When one looks at frontiers of science and technology to see where a small country like Qatar can make a contribution, robotic surgery stands out as an obvious candidate,” said Dr Tidu Maini, Executive Chairman of QSTP. “We are very fortunate to have the backing of H H Sheikha Mozah to pursue this vision and to have a partnership with a world class university such as Imperial College under Lord Darzi’s leadership and with Qatar’s leading hospital HMC. Qatar and the region need a world class laboratory to carry out research in robotic surgery and train the surgeons of the future. and for that QSTP is proud to announce the pre-launch of QRSC.”
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