Posted on April 17, 2016

The World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) provided a preview of its research and findings earlier today, ahead of the 2016 summit and under the guidance of its forum chairs.

The forum chairs took part in group workshops and open discussions as part of the final phase of their year-long research initiatives. Their final reports will be made public at the 2016 summit, set to take place from 29th to 30thNovember in Doha. The evidence-based research will highlight and put forth policy recommendations on seven key topics: Accountable Care, Autism, Behavioural Insights, Cardiovascular Disease, Economic Benefits of Investing in Health, Healthy Populations, and Precision Medicine.

In recognition of WISH’s contribution to advancing healthcare initiatives, Fahad Saad Al Qahtani, President of Community Development, Qatar Foundation, said: “It is clear that WISH is not only delivering tangible benefits to the people of Qatar, but, internationally, it is raising the nation’s profile in influential health policy circles through its research, ongoing programmes, and global partnerships. This growing success will be further demonstrated at the 2016 summit.”

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Professor the Lord Ara Darzi, Executive Chair of WISH, said: “The WISH Midterm Summit is an opportunity for us to convene our global community around healthcare issues that really matter. It’s a prelude to our summit in November. This year we are focusing on topics that resonate around the world – and here in Qatar – as we continue to create evidence-based research that offers policymakers practical solutions designed to create change.”

During the meeting, WISH also shared the early outcomes of an innovative new pilot project at the Al Wakra Health Centre, aimed to combat the prevalence of diabetes in Qatar. The SMART Clinic is an example of the local impact of WISH’s global research in Qatar. Its implementation was accomplished in cooperation with Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) and Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) earlier this year. It followed a landmark 2013 WISH report on Accountable Carechaired by Dr Mark McClellan, Director of the Robert J Margolis Center for Health Policy and the Margolis Professor of Business, Medicine and Health Policy at Duke University. Dr McClellan will chair another forum on the same topic at this year’s summit.

Dr Mariam Ali Abdulmalik, Managing Director of the Primary Health Care Corporation, said: "The SMART Clinic is improving patient satisfaction and increasing patient engagement by encouraging them to take better care of their health. We continually aim to increase health awareness among individuals and in society,which will in turn contribute towards our efforts of achieving a healthy community. This is what the SMART Clinic is aiming to accomplish."

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The SMART Clinic employs accountable care practices to improve the health and wellbeing of Qataris through the delivery of high-quality,efficient care for those who suffer from, or are at risk of, developing diabetes. Using a combination of data analytics and a risk-based screening, the programme identifies those with known diabetes risk factors and invites these high-risk patients to the SMART Clinic for voluntary diabetes screening. The clinic, which opened in January 2016, offers integrated care for those in need, through a specialised team that includes a physician, nurse, health educator, and dietician. By the end of March, more than 3,000 people had been invited for screening and nearly 1,000 had been tested for diabetes. Of those, 123 patients were identified as pre-diabetic, and 20 patients were diagnosed with diabetes.

Egbert Schillings, CEO of WISH, said:WISH continually works towards building a community of health leaders for whom their subject matter is a calling rather than an industry. By supporting the local healthcare leadership community – as we did with the Al Wakra clinic, among other projects over the last two years – the WISH programme is directly contributing to the success of Qatar’s exceptional health care sector.” WISH, a global initiative of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), is a meeting point for thousands of high-level policymakers, academics, and professionals. It has also evolved into a key platform for the dissemination of healthcare innovation and best practices.

For further information about WISH, please visit www.wish-qatar.org and Twitter @WISHQatar.

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