Dubai's ongoing health tourism strategy is taking off
The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) is continuing its work to drive up health tourism figures in order to further cement its presence as a leader within the industry. From implementing smart medical records, to upskilling medical professionals in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), it aims to be a leader across the entire healthcare industry.
Over 326,000 health tourists visited the country in 2016, a figure which is set to rise. Accumulating over AED1 billion, the country is placing significant investment in new healthcare facilities, technology and medical training in order to provide world-class patient care.
Attracting skilled medical professionals worldwide, the country is set to hold the first Dubai International Medical Tourism forum next month, which will entail how the country is set to further transform its services to further drive positive patient experiences, increase safety and guarantee exceptional patient care.
Set to attract over 30 local and international hospitals, the Forum will further highlight how the health insurance sector will play a key part in supporting the country’s operations both nationally and internationally, in addition to how new digital tools will enable the ongoing growth of its consumer-healthcare model.
Dr Layla Al Marzouqi, Director of Medical Tourism at the DHA, said, “The aim of the event is to review our achievements and to discuss and collect recommendations on our Strategy for Health tourism 2017 – 2021 in order to create the synergy between both the private and government sectors.
“Dubai is a leading health tourism destination. DHA recently announced a growth of 9.5% over 2015 on the number of international medical tourists who availed health services in Dubai.”
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At present, Dubai has up to 3,000 private hospitals, a number which is expected to rise significantly, along with public hospitals.
However, historically it has been a complex process for tourists to obtain a visa into Dubai. The Health Tourism Council has therefore worked to streamline this process to enable tourists to obtain a health visa within 48 hours, which can be renewed through presenting a medical report.
Putting the control back into a patient’s hand has been key to Dubai’s healthcare strategy, Dubai Health Experience. The development of its health tourism portal DXH.ae, provides a charter of a patient’s rights and responsibilities, and sees up to 10,000 monthly visits by users looking for information surrounding various medical treatments. The launch of the DXH mobile app also enables patients to look up information surrounding healthcare packages, anytime, anywhere.
"We are broadening the health tourism’s portfolio to position Dubai as a holistic wellness provider. For instance, the emergence of projects like The Retreat Palm Dubai MGallery by Sofitel, the first holistic wellbeing resort in the Middle East, is adding another edge to Dubai’s offerings in the health tourism sector,” added Al Marzouqi.
Linda Abdullah, consultant, the Health Tourism Council at DHA, also stated: We have recently broadened our portfolio to include health and wellness, in order to attract the tourists seeking a holistic wellness experience.
"We want health tourists to embrace their wellness journey in the city of Dubai, via our wellness offerings that include preventive health screenings, DNA tests, detox and weight loss programmes, anti-aging treatments, diabetes management and alternative medicines to name few."
Check Point: Securing the future of enterprise IT
Cybersecurity solutions provider Check Point was founded in 1993 with a mission to secure ‘everything,’ and that includes the cloud. Conscious that nothing remains static in the digital world, the company prides itself on an ability to integrate new technology with its solutions. Across almost three decades in operation, Check Point, with its team of over 3,500 experts, has become adept at protecting networks, endpoints, mobile, IoT, and cloud.
“The pandemic has been somewhat of an accelerator in the evolution of cyber risk,” explains Erez Yarkoni, Global VP for Cloud Business. “We had remote workers and cloud adoption a long time beforehand, but now the volume and surface area is far greater.” Formerly a CIO for several big-name telcos before joining Check Point in 2019, Yarkoni considers the cloud to be “part of [his] heritage” and one of modern IT’s most valuable tools.
Check Point has three important ‘product families’, Quantum, CloudGuard, and Harmony, with each one providing another layer of holistic IT protection:
- Quantum: secures enterprise networks from sophisticated cyber attacks
- CloudGuard: acts as a scalable and unified cloud-native security platform for the protection of any cloud
- Harmony: protects remote users and devices from cyber threats that might compromise organisational data
However, more than just providing security, Yarkoni emphasises the need for software to be proactive and minimise the possibility of threats in the first instance. This is something Check Point assuredly delivers, “the industry recognises that preventing, not just detecting, is crucial. Check Point has one platform that gives customers the end-to-end cover they need; they don't have to go anywhere else. That level of threat prevention capability is core to our DNA and across all three product lines.”
In many ways, Check Point’s solutions’ capabilities have actually converged to meet the exact working requirements of contemporary enterprise IT. As more companies embark on their own digital transformation journeys in the wake of COVID-19, the inevitability of unforeseen threats increases, which also makes forming security-based partnerships essential. Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) sought out Check Point for this very reason when it was in the process of selecting Microsoft Azure as its cloud provider. “Let's be clear: Azure is a secure cloud, but when you operate in a cloud you need several layers of security and governance to prevent mistakes from becoming risks,” Yarkoni clarifies.
The partnership is a distinctly three-way split, with each bringing its own core expertise and competencies. More than that, Check Point, HOOPP and Microsoft are all invested in deepening their understanding of each other at an engineering and developmental level. “Both of our organisations (Check Point and Microsoft) are customer-obsessed: we look at the problem from the eyes of the customer and ask, ‘Are we creating value?’” That kind of focus is proving to be invaluable in the digital era, when the challenges and threats of tomorrow remain unpredictable. In this climate, only the best protected will survive and Check Point is standing by, ready to help.
“HOOPP is an amazing organisation,” concludes Yarkoni. “For us to be successful with a customer and be selected as a partner is actually a badge of honor. It says, ‘We passed a very intense and in-depth inspection by very smart people,’ and for me that’s the best thing about working with organisations like HOOPP.”