Hamad bin Khalifa University Press (HBKU Press) is set to publish the conference proceedings for the 4th Annual South and West Asia Chapter of Extracorporeal Life Support Organisation (SWAC ELSO) Conference, which will be held from 15 to 18 February on QScience.com, the free, online, open access research platform run by HBKU Press. The proceedings will be featured in a special issue of Qatar Medical Journal, sponsored by Hamad Medical Corporation.

Extracorporeal life support (ECLS; used synonymously with the term Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation [ECMO]) is a variation of heart or lung bypass surgery. Whereas traditional heart/lung bypass requires a risky open cavity surgery that is done over a number of hours, extracorporeal life support helps deliver blood carrying oxygen to all parts of the body in patients with life threatening respiratory and/or cardiac failure using a system of circuit tubing. Essentially, ECMO works by removing blood from the person’s body and artificially removing the carbon dioxide, oxygenating red blood cells and then returning the oxygenated blood to the patient. ECMO artificially takes over the work of the heart and lungs. It is used in patients who have serious, but reversible, heart or lung problems providing necessary oxygenation to a patient while doctors treat the underlying condition.

ECLS can be sustained in high-risk patients for days or even weeks and has less risk than traditional open heart surgery. However, as it is a rapidly-evolving technique with ever-changing technology and body of knowledge, it is still a procedure that requires constant attention and exchanges between its practitioners.

This year’s conference theme is ‘Bringing ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation) Simulation to Life’ because of its series of simulation-based pre-conference workshops and a team competition. It will be attended by medical practitioners from ELSO chapters all over the world who meet annually to discuss the latest developments in the field.

Dr Ibrahim Fawzy, Director of Corporate Critical Care at Hamad Medical Corporation and ELSO-SWAC 2017 Conference Chair, said:

Qatar won the bid to host the South and West Asia Chapter annual meeting this year, as the country is showing promise in the development of extracorporeal life support research and training. The conference will attract experts from around the world who will help to develop ECMO strategy between Qatar, the Gulf and the world based on collaboration and international standards.’

The conference proceedings featured online on QScience.com in Qatar Medical Journal will include 78 abstracts from the conference.

“We are pleased to publish the conference proceedings of SWAC ELSO in Qatar Medical Journal’s first special issue,” explains Saffiyah Al Nuaimi, Managing Editor of Qatar Medical Journal. “This is a valuable addition to the journal and sheds light on the cutting-edge research originating from Qatar and the region. As the proud publisher of QMJ since 2012, we hope that the journal will feature the outcome of more local and regional medical conferences in future.”

Dr Fawzy also said:

It’s a win-win situation for SWAC ELSO ’17’s conference proceedings to be published on QScience.com in the Qatar Medical Journal. We have an amazing group of high-calibre and international speakers coming to speak at the event and, as we won’t be able to host the conference every year, by publishing conference proceedings on an open access site like QScience, we are making this information available to everyone now and as a reference in the future.’

For more information, visit qscience.com