MOH News
Dr. Al-Rabeeah Inaugurates E-Health International Conference in Riyadh
30 April 2013
His Excellency the Minister of Health, Dr. Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeeah, , affirmed that the Ministry of Health (MOH) has put forward a strategic plan for e-health amidst its strategic plans and important policies through which the Ministry endeavors to reach the e-government comprehensive plan drawn by the Saudi government upon the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, his Crown Prince, and His Excellency Second Deputy, May Allah save them. The Ministry established also more than 76 programs for providing date and exchanging them electronically among the different health sectors as it endeavors to transfer technology to all the facilities.
During the inauguration of E-Health International Conference on Tuesday morning 20/6/1434H (corresponding to 30/4/2012AD) at Four Season Hall, in Al-Mamlaka (Kingdom) Tower, in Riyadh City, His Excellency Dr. Al-Rabeeah said, “the Kingdom of the Saudi Arabia feels great happiness on the occasion of the eighth anniversary of swearing allegiance to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, May Allah save him. This occasion is filled with achievements and deeds that served the Saudi Arabia and all its residents and citizens”.

“The achievements witnessed in the health sector are one of the brightest aspects of this prosperous era.” added Dr. Al-Rabeeah.

Dr. Al-Rabeeah was quoted as saying, “we gather today, in a week full of achievements, to inaugurate this conference and accompanying exhibit in the thick of the scientific achievements and verve witnessed in the Ministry of Health (MOH) recently. The modern health system depends directly on the techniques of e-health and health information systems that help MOH to apply the new concept of healthcare rapidly, accurately and easily, the matter that contributes to providing a high-standard healthcare maintaining the safety and security of beneficiaries and winning their satisfaction”.
Then, the Minister of Health mentioned that the coming period will witness a development of many programs that aims to achieve a technically-connected health system on the level of clinical, administrative, and financial application as well as other important healthcare programs. He also highlighted the importance of E-Health Conference and made a reference to a dialogue conducted with experts, from within and outside the Kingdom, participating in the Conference with the aim of developing strategic plans as those drawn by the MOH, and applying such plans gradually and orderly.
In conclusion, Dr. Al-Rabeeah was quoted as saying, “There should be coordination among all governmental and private sectors and it's also necessary to have national criteria for e-health. For that reason, the MOH has started coordination with the Saudi Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization (SASO) to put forward criteria of e-health. When such criteria are completed, the Kingdom will have a national system for e-health that will coordinate and organize the health procedures in all health sectors in the Kingdom.
On his part, Dr. Mohammed bin Hamza Khoshaim, Vice Minister of Health for Planning and Development, pointed out that the E-Health Conference aims to provide a clear vision about the purpose of MOH's e-health strategy, and the way through which the Ministry can maintain the forefront and its leading role at the international level with respect to provision of the best health services currently and in the future through automating the health services.
On the other hand, His Excellency Dr. Abdullah Al-Wahaibi, Advisor to the Minister of Health and General Supervisor of Information Technology, mentioned that the purpose of convening this conference is to discuss the possibility of merging information technology solutions of health care. Regional and international e-health and information technology pioneers are to discuss the current challenges that hinder healthcare and evaluate visions and ideas about healthcare future plans.
Dr. Al-Wahaibi added that the Conference will shed light on e-health strategic purposes that are characterized by comprehensiveness and have unique plans not available throughout the region. This will definitely contribute to improvement of healthcare quality, access of services easily, and achievement of the highest values of quality, in a manner that ensures a promising and prosperous future for e-health project.
Then, he mentioned that the conference will discuss the challenges hindering health sectors in the Kingdom, such as, unification of standards, qualification of Saudi cadres in the field of e-health, and knowledge transfer and indigenization. That's to be added to the importance of holding partnership with the private sector to administrate the process of development.
“This conference is characterized by holding of dialogue sessions specialized in leadership and administration of change in the private sector as well as the role of doctors in each of them. The conference will also discuss an offer to transfer data electronically among different information systems,” said Dr. Al- Wahaibi, affirming the importance of integration and merger of data with the health governmental bodies and others, with the aim of developing a medical file that can be exchanged electronically in order to meet the needs of citizens in the Kingdom.
In conclusion, Dr. Al- Wahaibi was quoted as saying, “we hope to achieve this purpose, Allah willing, through cooperation between all bodies in both private and public sectors.”
Later on, conference participants moved to the round table to discuss exchange of data, experiences, and the latest techniques in the field of healthcare, in the presence of His Excellency Dr. Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeeah, the Minister of Health, His Excellency Dr. Saad bin Othman Al-Kossibi, the Governor of SASO, Mr. George Halferson, the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Kaiser Permanante in the United States of America, Mr. Denis Giokas, the Chief Executive Officer of technology department at Canada Health Infoway institution in Canada, Mr. Scott Macklin, the Chief Executive Officer of Partner Healthcare Co, and Mr. Steven Lieber, the Chief Executive Officer of Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).
It's worth mentioning that the administrative information systems conference for health care will allow a group of specialties in the field of Heath Informatics technology from within and outside the Kingdom to put forward and discuss some worksheets with the aim of exchanging experiences.
he conference will concentrate on the most prominent axes to be discussed, such as the complete assessment of medical and financial benefits resulting from investment in Heath Information technology, the future of health finance, the use of Heath Information technology for combating the widely-range spread diseases, the use of e-health monitoring network, the integration of e-health records, integration of health care institutions, the way through which the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will perform the structural aspects of exchanging heath information among hospitals,  an overview about the Saudi national program for applying the use of radio waves for identification in more than 140 maternity hospitals, merger of medical devices with the systems of heath information, and the storage of clinical data.
The conference will be concluded with elaborate visions on the latest trends towards the attainment of the “future hospital”, and will highlight the results of the leadership survey conducted by HIMSS Middle East in 2012, the sectors taking the lead and those lagging behind as well as the success possibility of emerging trends such as the health care via mobile devices in changing the form of the health care service in health care institutions.
Also, parallel to the HIMSS Conference in the Middle East, an accompanying exhibit will be held, through which companies and entities specialized in IT will offer their products amid an interactive environment, in which one of the attendees could emulate a patient, as part of a clinical rehearsal, and watch the health data being transferred from one system to another.

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