You are in Press Releases Paperless Hospitals Top Agenda at Saudi Healthcare Summit

Paperless Hospitals Top Agenda at Saudi Healthcare Summit

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Healthcare IT news International healthcare technology and systems event opens today in Riyadh to support growth of eHealth systems in Kingdom

The 2011 HIMSS Middle East Conference and Exhibition opens today (Sunday 29 May), bringing together leading international experts in healthcare information systems and technology. The three-day event which is being held at Four Seasons Hotel, Riyadh, opens as Saudi Arabia boosts investment in healthcare, with specialized IT and information systems areas of focus across the sector.

“Given Saudi Arabia is the Gulf’s largest economy and fastest growing population, the introduction of electronic health records is particularly important in meeting rapidly increasing demand and delivering world-class healthcare,” said H. Stephen Lieber, CAE, HIMSS President/CEO. In addition to the population demands in Saudi Arabia, with more than 25 million residents, the large scale and complexity of the Kingdom’s healthcare sector is driving the need for the standardization and efficiency benefits an IT-enabled healthcare system will bring.

Saudi Arabia’s health system comprises more than 100,000 healthcare professionals, including physicians, nurses and other allied health workers, with around 3,300 hospitals and primary healthcare facilities spread across 18 zones and regions. “Electronic health records are key to sharing information among healthcare providers, improving quality of care and helping to control costs for all stakeholders,” added Lieber.

Also closely linked with the benefits of a paperless network are initiatives such as clinical coding, with Saudi Arabia’s adoption of this World Health Organization standard also on the agenda at HIMSS 2011. Clinical coding provides a standard for the tracking of diseases and epidemics, identification and mapping of common causes of death and illnesses by region and overall improvement of health service planning.

HIMSS brings together more than 50 thought leaders from Canada, France, the Middle East, United Kingdom and USA, sharing insights, discussing emerging trends, strategies and lessons from eHealth initiatives applied around the globe, to help 500 regional and international delegates transform healthcare in their respective countries.

During the Leadership Summit, held on day one, speakers from the US, Asia and Europe will join regional government and private sector professionals, addressing the core issues impacting managers in the healthcare IT space. Providing international perspectives on the challenges and opportunities of the sector, areas to be covered include organisational governance, performance management and change management.

Days two and three will feature the Healthcare IT Conference and Exhibition, with the conference keynote presentation to be delivered by Mohammed R Al Yemeni, PhD, Advisor to the Minister of Health and Supervisor of ICT, Ministry of Health, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Al Yemeni will discuss the Kingdom’s significant challenges in rolling out successful healthcare IT strategies across the most populous nation in the Middle East.

Dr. Al Yemeni said, “HIMSS comprises a detailed line-up of international speakers and exhibitors within this highly specialised field. With a leadership summit, health IT conference and exhibition, the event will bring international and regional experts and decision-makers in healthcare IT together in Riyadh,”

Other sessions will address numerous issues relevant to healthcare IT professionals including interoperability, establishing KPIs, implementing best-practice and optimal use of electronic health information and industry intelligence.

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HIMSS is a cause-based, not-for-profit organization exclusively focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of information technology (IT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare. Founded 50 years ago, HIMSS and its related organizations have offices in Chicago, Washington, DC, Brussels, Singapore, Leipzig, and other locations across the United States. HIMSS represents more than 35,000 individual members, of which more than two thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations. HIMSS also includes over 520 corporate members and more than 120 not-for-profit organizations that share our mission of transforming healthcare through the effective use of information technology and management systems. HIMSS frames and leads healthcare practices and public policy through its content expertise, professional development, and research initiatives designed to promote information and management systems’ contributions to improving the quality, safety, access, and cost-effectiveness of patient care. To learn more about HIMSS and to find out how to join us and our members in advancing our cause, please visit our website at

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