DoH strikes MoU with Abu Dhabi Health Data Services

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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The Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH) and Abu Dhabi Health Data Services (ADHDS), an M42 company, have announced a significant step towards the provision of precision medicine in the Emirate.

The partnership will enable physicians to access pharmacogenomic reports (PGx) for consenting participants of the Emirati Genome Program through Malaffi, the Health Information Exchange (HIE) platform operated by ADHDS.

Malaffi is the region’s first Health Information Exchange platform that safely and securely connects public and private healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi. Malaffi, operated by ADHDS, enables the meaningful, real-time exchange of important patient health information between healthcare providers, creating a centralized database of unified patient records and improving healthcare quality and patient outcomes.

DoH and ADHDS signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during GITEX Global Week 2023. It was signed by Dr. Rashed Obaid Al Suwaidi, Executive Director of the Healthcare Workforce Planning Sector, and Mr. Kareem Shahin, Acting CEO of ADHDS.

Based on the insights from the Emirati Genome Program (EGP), one of the largest population genomic initiatives ever undertaken, PGx reports will provide doctors, for consenting EGP participants, with valuable information regarding their genetic profile and its influence and response to specific medications.

The report will support the physicians in prescribing medication to each patient to enhance treatment outcomes and minimize adverse drug events. Integrating genetic data into clinical decision-making marks a significant leap toward personalized medicine and safer healthcare.

Dr. Rashed Obaid Al Suwaidi, Executive Director of the Healthcare Workforce Planning Sector at DoH, said that, “It is a proud moment for Abu Dhabi to be one of the first places in the world to implement comprehensive pharmacogenomic reports for its citizens, securely available to their physicians to outline personalized treatment plans to patients.

“By understanding the genetic makeup of our community, we will be able to better predict, prevent, and treat genetic and chronic diseases, hence translating our vision of a ‘healthier Abu Dhabi’ for generations to come. By harnessing the power of data, we will be able to accelerate the integration of breakthrough solutions that meet the distinct health requirements of Emiratis – reinforcing the Emirate’s position as a leading destination for innovation in healthcare,” Dr. Al Suwaidi added.

Mr. Shahin noted that, “M42 is working to transform traditional healthcare and the robust connected healthcare infrastructure that we have established in Abu Dhabi will play a big role in this. Through the synergy of Malaffi Health Information Exchange and the integration of cutting-edge AI technology and genomic data, we are now enabling precision medicine at scale, crafting a blueprint for global success. This endeavor not only serves the best interests of our residents but also sets a remarkable precedent for global healthcare initiatives.”

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