Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar (WCM-Q) hosted a conference for primary care physicians organised entirely by graduates of the college – the first time that such a conference was held.

Over the course of two days, WCM-Q-trained physicians delivered in-depth lectures and engaged in roundtable discussions and debates to share the latest updates in clinical best practices with local family physicians, general practitioners and primary care doctors.

The conference, titled ‘Updates in Primary Care: Specialist-Led Case-Based Discussions Highlighting the Latest Evidence and Best Clinical Practices’, represented a major milestone in the mission of WCM-Q to ensure its alumni make valuable contributions to Qatar’s thriving healthcare sector.

The conference was co-directed by Dr Mahrukh Rizvi, a graduate of WCM-Q (Class of 2011) who undertook training in internal medicine, nephrology and critical care medicine at elite healthcare institutions in the US before returning to WCM-Q in 2022.

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More than 80 local physicians attended the alumni-led healthcare conference hosted by WCM-Q

The other co-directors of the conference were Dr Reshma Bholah, assistant professor of paediatrics at WCM-Q and a consultant pediatric nephrologist at Sidra Medicine (Class of 2011); and Dr Tariq Chukir, assistant professor of medicine at WCM-Q and consultant at the National Obesity Treatment Center at Hamad Medical Corporation (Class of 2015). The event was coordinated by the Division of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) at WCM-Q.

According to Dr Rizvi, now an assistant professor of medicine, it was great to be able to bring so many fellow alumni together to share knowledge and expertise with local primary care physicians.

We were nurtured by WCM-Q and the State of Qatar so we were very grateful for the opportunity to give something back.

Evidence-based updates, discussions

The first day of the conference presented sessions on evidence-based updates on the diagnosis and management of different forms of headaches, common dermatological conditions, sleep disorders, and thyroid nodules, before concluding with a debate on the role of weight management in the treatment of type 2 diabetes.

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WCM-Q alumnus, Dr Khalid Al-Khelaifi, now an orthopedic surgeon at Aspetar, at the inaugural WCM-Q alumni healthcare conference.

Day 2 began with a roundtable discussion on the methods for managing challenging clinical dilemmas. This was followed by lectures and updates on approaches to congestive heart failure, diagnosis and management of asthma, and esophageal disorders; updates in cartilage injury and osteoarthritis; and pharmacological management of musculoskeletal pain.

The conference concluded with a practical demonstration of simple daily exercises that primary care physicians can teach patients to manage degenerative joint disease of the knee.

Dr Thurayya Arayssi, vice dean for academic and curricular affairs at WCM-Q, said that the great success of the event was in showcasing a strong and highly engaged alumni community paying dividends for the healthcare sector in Qatar.

She added that a growing number of alumni who leave Qatar after graduation to continue training in the US are returning to serve the community here, to help educate the next generation of physicians and set the very highest standards for patient care.

The conference was accredited by the Ministry of Public Health Department of Healthcare Professions – Accreditation Section and by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME).

For more information about Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar (WCM-Q) and their webinar series, please visit their website: qatar-weill.cornell.edu

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