International conference in Riyadh sheds light on advances in radiation medicine

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Updated 13 February 2020

International conference in Riyadh sheds light on advances in radiation medicine

RIYADH: The sixth International Conference on Radiation Medicine began at Alfaisal University in Riyadh on Sunday.

About 1,500 delegates are registered for the conference, the largest of its kind in the Middle East, including 50 international speakers. Discussion topics include diagnostic and interventional radiology, medical physics, nuclear medicine, radiation oncology, radiation protection and safety and radiation emergency management.

“What makes (the conference) unique this year is that we have created new subjects that are related to innovation in health care and Saudi Arabia’s vision in this sector,” said Prof. Khalid Al-Kattan, dean of the College of Medicine at Alfaisal University, and consultant and head of thoracic surgery at King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center (KFSHRC).

Among the topics that will be discussed, Al-Kattan said, is “the use of artificial intelligence that will facilitate the utilization of robotic surgery and medicine.” Imaging is an important innovation for better patient care, he added.

Dr. Ali Zailae, a research adviser at the Ministry of Health, said that the conference is focusing on developments and challenges in the field at a time when the Kingdom is undertaking ambitious development projects in the health sector.

“It is a great opportunity for all professionals in the radiation medicine field to learn about what’s new in this field, meet top-notch speakers (from around) the world and find out about new trends with the transformation in the health sector in the Kingdom, and how to deal with the future,” Zailae said.

Dr. Robert Paul Guillerman, professor of radiology at Baylor College of Medicine and chief of academic affairs and faculty development with the Department of Pediatric Radiology at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, said he was impressed with the level of knowledge and the capabilities of physicians and practitioners in the region.

“I gave some of the local participants very challenging cases, and I was very impressed how well they were able to interpret them,” he said.

Dr. Khalid Al-Ismail, a musculoskeletal radiologist at KFSHRC, and chairman of the scientific committee, highlighted the important role medical conferences can play in correcting wrong perceptions of the capabilities of the healthcare sector in the Kingdom.

He said that many of the international participants were impressed by the level of development and the technological advancement of healthcare institutes in the Kingdom in general, and at KFSHRC in particular.

The conference continues until Feb. 13. It is organized by KFSHRC in collaboration with Alfaisal University, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Saudi Society for Medical Radiologic Technology, in partnership with other institutions in Riyadh.

Authorities in the Kingdom are working to modernize health-care services. According to a national survey late last year, 70 percent of Saudi citizens have a positive view of health services in the Kingdom.


Saudi Arabia’s Alkhobar becomes international role model for business continuity

Sultan Al-Zaidi (L) and Fahad Al-Jubeir.
Updated 21 September 2020

Saudi Arabia’s Alkhobar becomes international role model for business continuity

  • Alkhobar has pushed for a paperless municipality and emphasized the introduction of online services for residents

JEDDAH: Alkhobar municipality, along with Europe’s largest industrial manufacturing company Siemens, has been hailed as a role model for management excellence and business continuity.
The municipality has been awarded international certification for its excellence in managing crises and risks under difficult circumstances, in recognition of its administrative achievements during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Quality Austria (QA) awarded Alkhobar Municipality and Siemens with ISO 22301 and ISO 9001 certificates, which are concerned with business continuity management, especially during the pandemic.
ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is an independent and nongovernmental body. Its standards are internationally agreed by experts and are seen as the best way of doing something.
Alkhobar has pushed for a paperless municipality and emphasized the introduction of online services for residents.
Its mayor, Sultan bin Hamid Al-Zaidi, said that the municipality’s ISO achievement was in line with achieving the goals of the Eastern Province municipality. He added that the aim was to make Alkhobar a distinguished city, like other places in the province.
The Mayor of the Eastern Province, Fahad bin Mohammed Al-Jubeir, said that municipalities were keen to implement the most advanced administrative systems and provide the best services to beneficiaries.
“This comes in line with the objectives of municipal transformation, part of the National Transformation Program 2020 of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 reform plan which states that the Kingdom, with its outputs and services, should provide an international role model of quality and mastery, and raise the level of services provided by services and economic development agencies and enterprises,” Al-Jubeir told Arab News.

HIGHLIGHT

Business continuity was primarily done through strategic planning and taking into account the different local factors and needs of provinces and municipalities.

He added that the municipality had launched initiatives and programs seeking to make the Eastern Province and its governorates pioneers in administrative and service qualities, as well as improving public services.
According to QA’s regional manager, Dr. Mohamed Hassan, business continuity was primarily done through strategic planning and taking into account the different local factors and needs of provinces and municipalities.
“These instructions are then transformed into applicable programs and strategies at the amana (provincial government) level,” he wrote in an article. “Since the Eastern Province is, in this respect, the leading province in the Kingdom, the guidelines are finalized in consultation with the EP’s mayor, Fahad Al-Jubeir.”
The article gave examples of Alkhobar’s strategic emergency plans and said it had made arrangements with companies such as Al-Yamama for the prevention of damage from flash floods or storms.
It added that other public contractors, such as Nabatat, ensured that green spaces and parks in the city remained relaxing destinations for people, even on exceptionally hot summer days.
“A successful example of service digitization is the Balady software, which makes all municipality services available to citizens online. Moreover, the Balagat software offers a service in which complaints and suggestions from citizens can be reported and followed up online,” the article said. “If a complaint is not solved within 24 hours, it is automatically forwarded to the mayor of the Eastern Province, Al-Jubeir.”
The ministry’s foresight in initiating plans and preparations, the online software systems used and the high-quality standards in the municipality all helped in increasing the effectiveness of the business continuity management system.