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There's been a surge in demand for healthcare services throughout the MENA region in the past few years. Part of this growth has been fuelled by higher wages and better availability of healthcare services, alongside increased numbers of people suffering from lifestyle-related conditions, like cancer, obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
Growth in non-communicable disease throughout MENA and the UAE in particular
The World Health Organisation highlights that around 60% of the region's disease will be related to non-communicable conditions in the next five years. For example, it is estimated that around one in every ten adults living in the Middle East currently suffers from diabetes (insert link https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4835661/) and this figure is set to double to around 60mn over the next 20 years.
Within the UAE specifically, it has been recognised that a non-communicable disease epidemic is accounting for around 65% of total deaths. Some of the most common conditions include cardiovascular disease and cancer (insert link http://ejfm.trakya.edu.tr/userfiles/2015/December/7-muhammad-talha-khan.pdf).
It is estimated that around 70% of a physician's diagnosis is informed by testing carried out in medical laboratories. And, recent research illustrates that 98% of hospital inpatients had at least one laboratory test performed throughout their stay (insert link http://jalm.aaccjnls.org/content/1/4/410). All these statistics highlight just how important the medical laboratory is for the continued success of the MENA healthcare system and provide a great reason for laboratory professionals to attend Medlab 2019, being held from 4 - 7 February in the UAE.
Importance of the laboratory to the healthcare sector
Louis Pasteur once described laboratories as the "temples of the future", but all too often their contributions are taken for granted. All healthcare providers rely on the accuracy and precision of the laboratory results they receive. That's the reason it's vital for all medical laboratories to maintain their commitment to constant improvement.
No matter whether a laboratory is operated by a hospital, university or private medical group, the services offered are essential for modern lifestyles. Irrespective of the vital role medical laboratory science plays in saving the lives of people around the world, it is an underappreciated area.
Medical laboratory science produces those vital medical reports which inform the diagnoses of clinicians. Medical laboratory science and research is also critical for the production of the cures and vaccines needed to address epidemics and health conditions.
Importance of machine learning, artificial intelligence and automation within the medical laboratory
New technologies are bringing the benefits of increased efficiency and effectiveness of laboratory results to all sectors. Increased use of automation is reducing manual processes, while adopting paperless technologies is vastly speeding up the sharing process. Some of the latest medical laboratory technologies (insert link https://www.technologynetworks.com/tn/articles/the-lab-of-the-future-artificial-intelligence-machine-learning-and-microfluidics-294524) include:
- lab-on-a-chip with microfluidics
- liquid handling robots to deal with wet lab bench work, capable of processing thousands of samples and tests
- collaborative global research capability, using cloud computing, big data and artificial intelligence
You can find out more about the latest technologies to suit your laboratory needs at Medlab 2019.
Value of health research
Health research has an extremely high value for all societies. It offers insight into trends in disease and risk factors, as well as information on treatment outcomes, patterns of care and public health interventions. Pharmaceutical researchers and medical laboratories tasked with tracking clinical experience of drugs can help ensure the best medical practices and the highest possible quality of patient care. This type of research has led to a number of valuable discoveries, including new therapies and development in public healthcare. The successful introduction of the drug Herceptin, used for the treatment of breast cancer, is an important example of just how beneficial research into patient records and biological samples can be. Health research has always been an important aspect of laboratory medicine.
At the Medlab Congress attend any of the 11 CME accredited conferences to better educate yourself on various disciplines within the lab.(insert link http://www.ifcc.org/media/410314/02_Research_Guide_IFCC.pdf).
There are many ways that the use of big data and new technologies will prove useful for medical research, assessing clinical trials and the development of new drugs and identifying indicators for medical conditions and treatments. Medlab supports the knowledge and skills of laboratory professionals via continuing medical education (CME) credits, as well as providing access to best practice from some of the leading pioneers within the sector.
About Medlab 2019
Dr Aaron Han, Consultant Pathologist and Chief in the Department of Pathology at the American Hospital in Dubai is chairing the Haematology conference at Medlab. He comments about the importance of the laboratory as follows: "It is estimated that 70% of all medical decisions are based on lab test results. The lab is a key part for patients to get the right care at the right time. We are providing a critical patient service by high-quality lab testing done right the first time and reported in a timely fashion. In the future, we will see increasing patient empowerment to act on their lab results. In many settings patients have ready access to their lab reports through patient portals."
Medlab 2019 provides a powerful business platform to enable networking, connections and empowerment within the international medical laboratory industry. We recgonise that developing the value of laboratory medicine is absolutely critical for shaping the future of healthcare globally.
Medlab features 11-CME accredited conferences and is the region's only CME-accredited multi-disciplinary congress. The event focuses on offering delegates information and access to some of the most advanced medical laboratory techniques for better health that are currently on the market.
The conference programme includes the following accredited topics:
Histopathology and Cytology
Molecular Diagnostics and Genetics
Haematology and Blood Transfusion
Point of Care Testing
Cytogenetics and IVF
Exhibitors at Medlab
Some of the global exhibitors at Medlab presenting new technologies for inspection and trial out include:
- Tosoh Bioscience
You can find out more about Medlab 2019 on our website (insert link https://www.medlabme.com/en/home.html).
Attending the show and conference is an invaluable educational experience for laboratory professionals in any field of medicine and helps you connect with the key manufacturers in the MENA region. Delegates can assess some of the latest, most innovative laboratory medicine solutions, including diagnostic tests, reagents, disposables and equipment. This can be extremely important for lab purchase managers with the responsibility for negotiating supplier contracts.
Lab professionals can take advantage of the continuing medical development provided within the valuable conference offered at Medlab. The Medlab Congress multi-disciplinary sessions will provide up to 31.5 CME credits and cover a range of topics from review of the basic procedures within laboratories to the identification of advanced mechanisms to meet knowledge demands of all attending delegates. One major focus of this year's Congress is ways to implement a speedy and safe selection, evaluation and performance of tests, whether they are new or more established. All Congress delegates will benefit from this learning/sharing platform and achieve abilities to develop the adaptive solutions needed within laboratory daily practice and will also achieve the professional advancement they require.
The future of laboratory medicine is critical for the future of healthcare in the UAE and MENA region as a whole. To stay up-to-date with the latest global developments, visit the 2019 Medlab Exhibition and Congress from 4 to 7 February at the Dubai World Trade Centre.