MoHAP Unveils First National Center of Excellence for AI in Healthcare

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The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) has unveiled the inaugural Center of Excellence (COE) for artificial intelligence within the healthcare sector of the United Arab Emirates. This groundbreaking initiative is designed to advance the digitization of healthcare data, harness smart technologies to enhance healthcare capabilities and services, and create a comprehensive digital service ecosystem offering sustainable, innovative, and high-quality healthcare services to the public.

The official launch of the COE was announced during the GITEX Technology Week 2023 in Dubai, held from October 16 to 20. At this event, the Ministry presented a suite of digital products and cutting-edge technical systems and solutions to address current and future healthcare needs, consolidating its position as a key driver of the government’s digital transformation.

The COE, staffed by Emirati experts in collaboration with SAS, a global leader in AI and analytics software, will encompass seven major areas of expertise. These include streamlining the licensing process for medical facilities through AI-driven analytics, facilitating the selection of optimal hospital and medical center locations for investors seeking medical facility licenses. Moreover, the COE will support healthcare professionals in obtaining the necessary licenses based on national requirements.

Additionally, the COE will oversee an organ donation and transplant center, utilizing AI to match donors and recipients through test results, expediting organ transplant procedures and prioritizing critical cases both within and outside the UAE. AI will also play a pivotal role in analyzing radiological scans, thereby improving the efficiency of medical diagnoses. Furthermore, the COE plans to launch an AI lab in December of the current year.

In managing the nation’s strategic medicine stock, the COE will employ AI to link databases and analyze usage patterns to establish distribution strategies tailored to actual needs. This comprehensive approach will monitor the entire journey of medicines, from their country of manufacture to the patient, while maintaining connections to other national systems.

The Ministry emphasizes that the COE will enhance the analysis of birth and mortality data, improving the understanding of causes of death and related statistics. This capability will be vital for managing the Ministry’s crisis, emergency, and disaster center. Finally, the center will play a critical role in ensuring data security and conducting in-depth big data analysis to bolster the cybersecurity of the Ministry’s network.

National Strategy

H.E. Ahmed Ali Al Dashti, Assistant Undersecretary for the Ministry’s Support Services Sector, underscored that the COE aligns with the Ministry’s vision to enhance digital services through the latest service technologies, including AI, big data, and cloud computing. This initiative is in harmony with the UAE’s National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence 2031 and the UAE Centennial 2071 vision.

H.E. Al Dashti highlighted that the establishment of the Center of Excellence for Artificial Intelligence is the result of a collaboration between MoHAP and SAS, a leader in data analysis and AI, in line with the leadership’s vision to leverage cutting-edge technological innovations, utilizing big data for predictive analysis and more effective decision-making. The center also aims to attract a talented team of national researchers to drive technological innovation, thus reinforcing the UAE’s global prominence as a flourishing digital government exemplar, in line with the main objectives of the UAE National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence 2031.

Health Data Analysis

Sameer Alkhoory, Information Technology Director and Digital Health Department, emphasized that the COE’s launch is grounded in the application of data-driven best practices to execute strategic planning and decision-making effectively. This approach utilizes databases to assess and evaluate healthcare service performance, ensuring the optimal allocation of healthcare resources and services to enhance public health and modernize healthcare indicators.

The COE will focus on the development of high-quality analytical and predictive models using AI applications and advanced data sources, with the ultimate goal of providing reliable, quality analytics and research that enhance the user experience. The collaboration with SAS will elevate the center’s role in developing swift and efficient digital solutions for processing vast amounts of data.

Michel Ghorayeb, Managing Director of SAS UAE, emphasized the commitment of the Ministry of Health and Prevention to be at the forefront of innovative technologies like advanced analytics and AI. The objective is to utilize AI to improve the well-being and quality of life for service users and society at large, thereby shaping the future of the UAE’s healthcare sector through artificial intelligence.

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