27 January 2010

Arab Health – Wednesday Impressions by Dan

Handheld Units

In day three of the Arab Health Expo, I concentrated on the small handheld ultrasound units. The Siemens P10 was on display with little attention. This product is about 2 years in the market now.

The GE Vscan was showcased on display prominently in the center of the ultrasound product line. New to the market, it's simple user interface and crisp display is announced as an “ultraportable, easy-to-use visualization tool”. The target is primary care clinicians, cardiologists, and critical care clinicians. The 510k clearances allows commercial sales in the USA, Europe and India on February 15, 2010, and in the Middle East by March 1, 2010.

Portable units from Landwind, WellD, and Kai Xin are also available to the international markets.

New Zealand Healthcare
I attended a Press Conference hosted by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the New Zealand government's economic development agency. Additional content at www.nzte.govt.nz and www.marketnewzealand.com.

The country’s size and dispersed population have led to innovative uses of technology, and a flexible and highly responsive approach to meeting healthcare requirements. Added to this is a single tier of governance enabling better coordination and faster implementation and a publicly funded health service allowing national strategies to be developed and implemented across the whole system.
New Zealand has leveraged these advantages locally and globally. Integrated health strategies have been implemented across the country, including the National Health Index (NHI), which was initiated more than 20 years ago and enables the transfer of clinical information between agencies and data to be linked for monitoring, research and reporting purposes.

The success of the NHI has led to the development of the Health Practitioner Index and nationwide health data networks connecting hospitals, laboratories, radiology services and general practitioners, allowing the secure sharing of relevant medical information in a timely fashion.

New Zealand’s health sector is well versed in technology to drive efficiencies and deliver better health outcomes. The country has a high adoption rate of Electronic Medical Record (EMR) systems, with nearly all of New Zealand’s general practitioners using computerized systems for clinical as well as administrative purposes and 100 percent of laboratories communicating via secure health data networks every day.

• A 2007 Commonwealth Fund survey shows New Zealand is ranked first in patient-centered care.
• A 2006 report into the health systems of developed countries shows New Zealand general practitioners have the second highest rate of electronic medical record use in the world.
• Practice management software estimated to be used by 95 percent of New Zealand general practices for patient administration, such as waiting room management, billing and referral orders and results.
• Over 98 percent of New Zealand general practitioners are using software for clinical purposes such as generating prescriptions and recording details of patient health encounters.
• 99 percent of New Zealand pharmacies are computerized.

The health system in New Zealand is based on the fundamental philosophy that healthcare should be delivered to those who need it, when they need it. With a strong focus on primary care, the health sector is internationally recognized as a provider of high quality, trusted services that are delivered in a cost-effective manner.

Overall responsibility for New Zealand’s health and disability system lies with the Ministry of Health who are the principle advisors to the government. They fund and monitor regional and national services, and provide regulatory functions.

In order to continue to deliver high quality healthcare, the Ministry has identified priority areas including ongoing improvements in preventive and primary care, chronic disease management and associated social determinants, indigenous health, and the specific needs of children, young people and senior citizens.

The Ministry has a clear focus on collaboration at local, regional and national levels to deliver innovative solutions and a cohesive and efficient system.

New Zealand’s health system is funded via a mix of capitation and fee-for- service, and includes public, private and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) which work together to provide and fund healthcare.
Burj Tower

I also took time to make my way to the Burj Khalifa Tower (formally known as the Burj Dubai Tower), unquestionably the World's tallest manmade structure. If you have an interest in visiting the observation level, be aware that 100 Dirham tickets are usually sold out two to three days in advance. On the other hand, a 400 Dirham contribution will allow priority access to the front of the line. The single flight elevator holds about a dozen people and makes the 160 stories ride in about 30 seconds.

Current records of the Tower:

  • Tallest skyscraper to top of spire: 828 m (2,717 ft)
  • Tallest structure ever built: 828 m (2,717 ft)
  • Building with most floors: 160 floors
  • World's highest elevator installation, situated inside a rod at the very top of the building
  • World's fastest elevators at speed of 64 km/h (40 mph) or 18 m/s (59 ft/s)
  • Highest vertical concrete pumping (for any construction): 606 m (1,988 ft)
  • The first world's tallest structure in history to include residential space
  • Highest outdoor observation deck in the world (124th floor) at 442 m (1,450 ft)
  • World's highest mosque (located on the 158th floor)
  • World's highest installation of an aluminum and glass façade, at a height of 512 m (1,680 ft)
  • World's highest swimming pool (76th floor)
Here is a view from the observation deck, to the west: