Posted on March 10, 2018

The World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), an initiative of Qatar Foundation (QF), has announced Mrs. Mary Robinson as the first keynote speaker of its fourth global summit, to be held at the Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) on November 13 and 14, 2018.

Mary Robinson is currently a member of the ‘Elders’, a group of independent global leaders, which includes former UN Secretaries-General Kofi Annan and Ban Ki-moon, convened by Nelson Mandela in 2007 in order to tackle some of the world’s greatest challenges.

Mrs. Robinson was the first female President of Ireland, serving between 1990 and 1997. She has led a distinguished career, which has included serving as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. She is also a recipient of the Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience award, given in recognition of her work promoting human rights. As founder of the Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice, which counts Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation, as a member of its international advisory board, Mrs. Robinson has a strong interest on the health impact of climate change.

Looking ahead to her visit to Doha, Mrs. Robinson said: “I am honored to be representing the Elders at WISH 2018 and look forward to discussing with global health leaders how we can accelerate progress towards Universal Health Coverage. The Elders believe that this represents the best strategy to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goal on good health and well-being.” WISH Executive Chair, Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham, said: “We are delighted to welcome Mary Robinson to WISH 2018 to give a keynote address. With a long and distinguished career of championing human rights, social justice, and healthcare issues at the highest level, she perfectly embodies WISH’s vision of bringing about a healthier world through global collaboration.”

WISH 2018 will once again gather global healthcare leaders in QNCC to highlight and address some of the world’s most pressing healthcare challenges. WISH, which hosts its showcase Doha summit biennially, has quickly established itself as a major highlight of the global healthcare calendar for thousands of high-level policy-makers, academics, and professionals who attend. It has also become a key platform for the dissemination of healthcare innovation and best practices.

WISH 2018 will feature nine research forums, each led by an internationally renowned expert in their field. Between them, the nine forums will highlight and address some of the world’s most pressing challenges across topics that cover medical, ethical, technological, and humanitarian aspects of healthcare. As part of an ambitious program for WISH 2018, the summit will also showcase organizations from around the world that are shaping the design, delivery, and financing of healthcare. A specially-picked group of young innovators will also be given a platform for sharing their novel ideas with a global audience of healthcare policy-makers and influencers.

WISH 2018 will also feature reports on its ongoing impact, locally and globally, on issues previously highlighted at the summit, such as autism, and will feature an increased array of community-based events across Qatar. The gathering will further present examples of healthcare innovation in action within ‘The WISH Hub’ – an enhanced interactive space that will showcase novel healthcare products, host informal discussions, and provide hands-on experience of technologies such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality.