July 2014

One of the first fully digital hospitals in the world, the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi seeks to bring world-class, multi-specialty medical treatments to patients from around the GCC region.

The United Arab Emirates’ goal of becoming a regional hub for medical services is set to receive a boost with the opening next year of digital multi-specialty hospitalCleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi (CCAD) — an extension of the renowned medical institution based in the United States.

Cleveland Clinic was recently ranked 4th best hospital overall in the United States for 2014-2015 according to the U.S. News & World Report. It was ranked first among heart hospitals in the country, and was top-ranked in 14 specialties, just one specialty less behind overall leaders Mayo Clinic, Massachusetts General Hospital and Johns Hopkins.

The institution wants to replicate this expertise in health care delivery in its new campus in the UAE capital with the help of Western-trained, board-certified, foreign and local physicians, nurses, technicians and caregivers using the latest medical and information technologies.

“It is going to be one of the first fully digital hospitals in the world. We will have almost no paper in the entire hospital,” Dr. Marc Harrison, Chief Executive Officer of Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, recently said in a lecture, according to a report from The National.

“The fact that a unified medical record is going to exist will provide seamless communication, which means there is an opportunity for us to communicate back and forth with the main campus and elsewhere in the healthcare system, without having the patient have the responsibility of carrying paper,” Harrison was quoted in the article as saying.

The Abu Dhabi campus is touted to deliver the same world-class standard of health services U.S.-based Cleveland Clinic is known for, but with the specific needs of the region’s patients in mind. Harrison said that the Abu Dhabi extension will focus on lifestyle-related conditions such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease, all worsening problems in the Middle East population.

The 24-story LEED Gold-Certified facility in Al Maryah Island will have five Centers of Excellence: Heart & Vascular Institute, Digestive Disease Institute, Eye Institute, Neurological Institute, and Respiratory & Critical Care Institute, according to anEmirates 24/7 article. It will have 364 beds, five clinical floors, three treatment and diagnostic levels, 26 operating rooms, and 13 floors of acute and critical care units.

According to the IBM white paper, The digital hospital evolution, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi “is being built from the ground up to host the latest technologies in surgery, imaging, telemedicine and electronic medical records, integrating systems in a manner that will be the first of its kind in the country and the Middle East region.”

For years, many patients in the UAE and the Middle East have been going to the U.S. to seek treatment. With the establishment of Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi and other developments such as Dubai Healthcare City, Emiratis and other patients from around the world could now receive treatment of the highest quality without going abroad.

During his lecture, Harrison praised Abu Dhabi and UAE’s leaders in bringing the plan to fruition: “What I have here is an opportunity to work with great leaders who are able to see a future in humanity, the progressive thoughts, enormous opportunity – in many cases a blank piece of paper that can colour in the future of health care.”

Through its Vision 2021 program, the UAE has become one of the leading adopters ofdigital health technology in the world in recent years, inking numerous agreements with healthcare companies and organizations to build advanced systems and infrastructure to support its vision of becoming a global medical tourism hub.


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