Congressional delegation sees Qatar as ‘essential partner’ of the US

A member of the US Congress emphasised the importance of advancing precision medicine for the health of future generations, as he and two other fellow American congressmen visited Qatar Foundation recently.

The congressional delegation who visited Education City included Representative Eric Swalwell (California), Seth Moulton (Massachusetts), and Jim Himes (Connecticut). Congressmen Swalwell and Moulton ran in the 2019 Democratic presidential primaries, but withdrew before former Vice President Joe Biden accepted the party’s nomination.

Representative Swalwell is leading a bipartisan effort in the US Congress to advance precision medicine – which is a primary area of Qatar Foundation’s research focus.

He said that precision medicine can drastically improve treatment and dramatically bring down the cost of healthcare. Personalised medicine can target treatments only to those patients who will benefit from them, and eliminate the need for costly hospitalisations, making health systems more effective and efficient.

He said that he is trying to push legislation in the US Congress to assure that every child will have access to their genetic profile.

Qatar’s focus on precision medicine is prescient. As genomic sequencing becomes less expensive, opportunities increase to diagnose patients sooner and treat them more effectively.

Precision medicine is a rapidly evolving field in which physicians use medical interventions to assess or alter the molecular characteristics – often genetic – that cause or contribute to certain diseases or predict whether certain patients will respond to various treatments. Congressman Swalwell leads the Personalized Medicine Coalition (PMC) which is educating the US Congress and the public about the benefits of earlier detection, targeted treatment and improved prevention strategies in personalised medicine.

Congressman Moulton meanwhile, said that the bilateral relationship between Qatar and the United States has great potential, and that he expects the friendship between the two countries to grow in the future.

Relations between the US and Qatar are also of great interest to Congressman Himes, who is an advocate for early childhood education and the environment.

It’s also a model for reform in the Arab world and a leader in women’s rights. Qatar is a lynchpin in the Middle East and provides a bridge between the Islamic world and the West.