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WISH 2018 will address major global challenges


Executive chair of WISH, Professor the Lord Darzi of Denham, said the fourth edition of World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) 2018 contributes to building relations that will yield innovative solutions, impacting healthcare policies around the world, and for many years to come.
During his opening speech at WISH 2018, he added that this unique summit provides an unforgettable opportunity to address the major challenges facing health systems around the world, stressing that participants will present their experiences and propose appropriate strategies to overcome the most pressing healthcare challenges, with everyone sharing the goal of building a healthier society.
Lord Darzi said WISH has gathered the world in Qatar, which has the most advanced hospitals in the world and has built an advanced healthcare system that puts it in the ranks of countries in this regard.
He added that there are health facilities that reflect the prosperity in Qatar, the most recent being the Sidra Medicine which was opened on Monday.
He added Qatar has become more open to the world after the siege imposed by the Saudi-led quarter last June, as normal life goes on. The government continues to provide healthcare services and infrastructure development. Investment in healthcare and activities in other sectors continue, all of which are positive indicators of healthcare performance in the country.
Qatar has faced attempts to isolate it and insisted that it be more open than it was in the past, and even cancelled the requirement of an entry visa to citizens of more than 80 countries around the world, he said.
Lord Darzi praised Qatar’s wise and open leadership, which put health and education at the centre of its strategy and invested in health and educational facilities, including universities.
He called for an international agreement for healthcare in conflict areas, to expand the health service coverage to reach about 1bn people during the next five years, emphasising the need to pay attention to mental health sector in the workplace as this may have a negative impact on workers and the institution they work in.
Meanwhile, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee (IRC), David Miliband, announced during his speech the committee’s schedule to treat global malnutrition.
Miliband said severe malnutrition in the first and critical years of life can permanently impair long-term cognitive and physical development. He added malnutrition increases the risk of infection due to poor immune system performance, which can exacerbate cognitive and physical development problems. Therefore, it is not only about the health and safety of children, but also about malnutrition that deprives children of their chance to live a full, productive and healthy life.
Milliband also spoke of the need to invest in innovative and effective solutions to deal with humanitarian crises at a time when the number of people in desperate situations is increasing and asking the IRC for aid.
In a film played during the opening session, Former US president Jimmy Carter, Nobel Peace Prize 2002 winner, said: “With political will, action and commitment, we can help make a difference in people’s lives.”
He also said a healthier world can be reached, but success in this matter depends on the determination to make every effort to achieve it.
The message of the main speakers of the first day of WISH 2018, focused on providing the best opportunity for positive change through cross-border and cross-sectoral synergies and sharing innovative solutions that address the most pressing health challenges.
The sessions provided an opportunity to participants to interact with experts to explore healthcare issues closely. Topics on the first day of the conference included eye health, healthcare in conflict situations, data science and artificial intelligence. Participants also had the opportunity to visit the WISH Innovation Hub, an open interactive space that highlights the efforts of more than 50 innovators and exhibitors of the conference.
The second and last day of WISH 2018, will include a speech by legendary US swimmer Michael Phelps, who will share his personal perspective on mental health challenges with attendees.
There will also be a keynote speech by former president of Ireland Mary Robinson and a member of the ‘Elders’, a group of independent global leaders who will focus on the impact of climate change on health.

Source: Gulf Times Qatar