UAE – The Alliance of Academic Health Centres International (AAHCI) has formally designated the Mohammed bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU) as its Regional Office for the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA).

AAHCI announced that it would relocate from its Lebanon office at the American University of Beirut Medical Centre this year in June 2023.

The Association of Academic Health Centers International has selected MBRU as its new regional office in the MENA region for two years, effective 1st July 2023.

In a press release, the US-based medical association said: “As the new AAHCI Regional Office, MBRU plans to forge a coordinated approach aimed at fostering effective solutions in five areas.”

AAHCI has appointed Professor Alawi Alsheikh-Ali as its MENA Regional Ambassador.

He will assume hosting and leadership responsibilities of the AAHCI MENA regional office from the Mohammed bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences in Dubai.

The new AAHCI regional office for the MENA region will focus on evolving clinical care particularly transforming the patient experience.

MBRU also plans to divest investments in biomedical research while advancing the resilience of academic health centres.

Besides adaptations in health professions and medical education, the new AAHCI Regional Office will bolster partnerships and community outreach.

The move to establish Dubai as the AAHCI MENA Regional Office comes at a time when MBRU has been a member of AAHCI since 2021.

MBRU’s designation is a critical milestone in its journey as Dubai’s first academic health system with a mission to impact lives and shape the future of health through the integration of care, learning, and discovery.

Moreover, the Mohammed bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences hosted its latest regional meeting in October 2022 under the theme, “Transforming Academic Health Centres: Innovation and Resilience”.

The new regional office in Dubai will facilitate educational programs, exchanges with regard to models for success and best practices as well as data collection and analysis.

Commenting on the changes, Professor Alawi Alsheikh-Ali, AAHCI MENA Regional Ambassador and Chief Academic Officer of the Dubai Academic Health Corporation (DAHC), said: “Improvements in healthcare rarely occur in isolation.”

He observed that the healthcare challenges facing patients in the Middle East region are being tackled by organisations worldwide, noting that every member of MENA AAHCI brings something valuable to the table.

As the AAHCI Regional Office, we intend to leverage the strengths and expertise of each AAHCI member to expand knowledge and rapidly integrate medical advances into clinical practice and community outreach programs,” highlighted Professor Alawi.

He further welcomed healthcare organisations in the MENA region to join AAHCI, a subsidiary of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) based in Washington D.C. in the United States.

A well-coordinated, collaborative approach to solving today’s pressing challenges is essential to improve the health and vitality of the communities we serve,” added the AAHCI MENA Regional Ambassador.

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