A new decade

AWe have now taken the first few firm steps into 2010 and the next decade. Healthwise, a phenomenal amount of work – research, clinical development and infrastructure – has been achieved regionally and around the world. The pace of development of healthcare infrastructure has been quite remarkable in the Gulf, particularly in the oil rich countries like Qatar, Saudi and the UAE, where this heady tempo continues despite the global recession. Dr Margaret Chan gave a talk recently to her executive council where she looks at the achievements … and challenges in global public health over the past decade. Read ‘The State of Global Healthcare at the Turn of the Decade’ on page 32.

It’s been just over a year since Israel launched its devastating attack on Gaza and they continue to blockade the border crossings putting at great risk the health of the 1.4 million people resident in Gaza, and in particular the 750,000 children who live there. Several United Nations agencies as well as the Association for International Development Agencies, representing more than 80 NGOs, have issued a strongly worded statement calling on Israel to open the borders and allow the population of Gaza to have their rightful access to healthcare. This means not only allowing them to cross the border, but allowing desperately needed healthcare supplies into Gaza to restock dreadfully poor healthcare facilities. Read Gaza Update on page 30.

Human resources management in a hospital setting comes under the spotlight in this issue with guest writer Dr Abrar Khan suggesting the traditional human resources department and their management style is no longer suited to this industry, particularly in this region where the workforce is so transient. He brings a number of interesting potential solutions to the table. Read ‘New Thinking: HR and a Transient Workforce’ on page 36.

The Arab Health 2010 exhibition in Dubai in January was packed to the brim, even with the addition of another large exhibition hall, which adds considerably more floor space to the already very large show. Considering the global economy is still recovering from recession, exhibitors were pleasantly surprised by the massive and, as one exhibitor put it, ‘quality’ turnout. Hopefully this is a good indicator that while the rest of the world may still be struggling with recession, the Middle East is saying ‘game on’ again! Read the Arab Health report on page 54.

Lastly, if you would like to do your bit for charity and while doing so give your legs a stretch in the magnificent mountains of Lebanon, consider joining us on the Gulf for Good – Lebanon Mountain Eco-Trail Challenge. Middle East Health is one of the key sponsors of this challenge. For details see page 27.

Good Health

Brian Wilkie


A Lebanon Mountain Eco-Trail

Middle East Health is sponsoring the Gulf for Good adventure charity drive in May this year.

We call on doctors and all other healthcare workers in the region to join us between 7 and 14 May 2010 to discover Lebanon’s remote natural beauty, connect with her warm and friendly people and experience age-old culture and culinary delights on the first long-distance hiking trail in Lebanon.

Funds raised will go to the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund and SOS Children’s Villages.

For more information on the Lebanon Mountain Eco-Trail challenge…

Download the PDF file

(Mar-Apr 2010)



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