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Leading industry experts highlight opportunity for e-Health at Life Science Discussion hosted by Dubai Science Park

Inaugural panel calls for continued expansion of the e-Health sector, while another raised focus on intellectual property rights transforming healthcare

Dubai, UAE: Dubai has the potential to become one of the world’s leading e-Health nations, according to delegates that gathered at the the 2nd Dubai Life Science Discussion hosted by Dubai Science Park, a member of TECOM Group, during UAE e-Health week at the Mina A’Salam Hotel in Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai.

The event, which was anchored by two panel discussions, was attended by respected industry leaders and policy makers representing the government, healthcare, technology and pharmaceutical sectors, as well as law and consultancy experts. Talks focused on the economic and social benefits stemming from integrating medical technologies and intellectual property rights within the healthcare sector.

Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi, Executive Director of Dubai Science Park and member of the panel, said: “As we envision the future of healthcare, technology will play an important role in creating solutions, but also enabling access for those who need these services the most. Dubai Science Park is committed to supporting the UAE’s medical industry by improving the quality and cost effectiveness of health services through the strengthening of collaborations between the public and private sectors.”

The keynote panel of the day focused on enabling the expansion of e-Health and led to meaningful discussions between the Dubai Health Authority and other public and private sector stakeholders, who regrouped later in the day for a closed discussion to determine appropriate steps for implementation. The outcome strategy emerging from the event is aligned with Dubai Science Park’s innovation agenda which seeks to bolster the integration of healthcare services and technology, encouraging its adoption through fostering public-private partnership in the field of life sciences.

The e-Health panel highlighted the potential of the UAE’s healthcare information technology, which is expected to grow by as much as 11 percent by 2019 according to Technavio, a market research company that focuses on emerging markets. Together with government initiatives including mobile applications for patient engagement, data analytics, and the digitisation of electronic medical records, industry-wide spending on information technology by public and private sector healthcare providers, will also play a role in maintaining Dubai’s rise as a smart e-Health city.

The second panel of the day highlighted a need for intellectual property to enable widespread access to unmet health needs in the UAE and around the region. Innovative intellectual property policies has traditionally meant the industry takes larger strides towards progress. However, the growing demand for best-in-class health services means new medical developments need to be available to patients easily. The Dubai Government’s sustained investment in health infrastructure has resulted in Dubai being recognised as a major destination for medical tourism, improved facilities, and locally produced research, the majority of which is on a par with or exceeding internationally recognised standards.

Janahi said: “Healthcare and Life Sciences are two sectors that have been identified as a priority sector by regional governments, and the UAE healthcare sector, in particular, has witnessed significant progress in the past few years as it is projected to advance at an annual average growth of 12.7 percent from 2015 to $19.5 billion in 2020, according to the latest GCC Healthcare Industry report published by Alpen Capital.
Dubai has become home to premier medical institutions, attracting medical experts from America, Europe and other global pacesetters to the emirate. This is driving Dubai Science Park to playing an instrumental role in creating a health and wellness ecosystem to bring forward the UAE’s vision of becoming one of the most innovative and happy countries by 2021.”
The Life Science Discussion brought together some of the most influential leaders in the industry, including Dr. Mohammad Al Redha, Chair of Emirates Health Informatics Society and Director of the Organizational Transformation Office & Health Data and Information Analysis Department,  Dubai Health Authority; Majid Kaddoumi, Vice President & Managing Director MEACAT, Medtronic; Jim Massey, Executive Director, Cerner Middle East; Dr. Zeydan Abuissa, Country Manager, Pfizer Gulf and Levant; Hady Khawand, Partner & Country Manager, Saba Intellectual Property; Mrs. Carole Bremeersch, Regional Counsellor for IP Matters (Middle East), Economic Department of the French Embassy in the United Arab Emirates; Sara Holder, Managing Partner, MENA region, Rouse;  Ahmad Saleh, Regional Head of Patents & Designs (R&D and Innovations) Intellectual Property, Al Tamimi, and Christina Sochacki, Associate – Healthcare Practice Group at Al Tamimi.

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