Hal Wolf, HIMSS President & CEO, welcomed attendees Nov. 29 to the HIMSS20 Health 2.0 Middle East Health Conference, the first-ever HIMSS virtual digital health event in the Middle East.
Wolf kicked off the opening keynote session, titled Transforming Health with Technology: From Vision to Reality, from his home in Colorado in the United States, where he’s been working remotely and maintaining social distancing throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. He noted that the conference is taking place at a critical moment, a time when the pandemic has disrupted lives all around the world in unimaginable ways, with cases surging and world leaders making difficult choices about how to respond.
Wolf addressed Saudi Arabia’s plan, “Vision 2030,” to transform the economy and diversify the Kingdom’s sources of income. The digital transformation of the Kingdom’s health system is a key component of this comprehensive plan. Wolf said the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been a leader in using digital health innovations to respond to COVID-19 through telehealth, a national e-prescription gateway and the Ministry of Health’s smartphone app. These efforts along with the heroic dedication of all frontline healthcare workers, health systems and governments around the world have paved the way for the advancement of digital technology and an increase in the use of digital health solutions.
The ability to manage future infectious diseases and other health challenges depends on technology, solutions, data and new ways of thinking about how to best deliver care, Wolf said. He said the world may now be ready to realize the power of information and technology to improve health and wellness for everyone.
The next step is to accelerate the digital transformation of healthcare. Wolf said we must address the barriers to interoperability and acknowledge and address the importance of the social determinants of health. He said success is built on people, process, and technology, though people and processes matter most.
Wolf said we all have a critical role to play in the adoption of digital health solutions to manage COVID-19, to prepare for future health emergencies and to make healthcare more affordable and more accessible for all.
HIMSS looks forward to working with healthcare leaders in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and across the Middle East, he said, to build on the progress made throughout the past nine months and to realize the full health potential of every human, everywhere.
November 29-December 2, 2020 | Digital
This powerful and exciting digital experience will give you the ability to engage and share ideas through valuable interactive sessions, and find solutions that support your digital healthcare transformation through our virtual 3-D exhibit hall and networking area.