Ways to enhance self care, personal health and wellness were explored during a six-day, two-part immersion course hosted by the Institute for Population Health (IPH) at Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar (WCM-Q).

WCM-Q invited The Wellness Enhancement Learning Course (TheWEL), a health and wellness organisation based in Glasgow, Scotland, to help participants in Doha manage stress, nurture their own happiness and well-being, practice self-compassion, and promote good physical health.

Dr David Reilly
Dr David Reilly

Designed and delivered by Dr David Reilly, an internationally-recognised physician, academic and teacher, the course helps participants understand and overcome the personal challenges they face in their day-to-day lives, helping them to cope more effectively and then flourish.

The course, which takes a holistic view of wellness, also aims to empower people to make healthy lifestyle choices in terms of food, exercise and sleep, to manage their social relationships, and to find peace of mind through meditation and mindfulness practices.

A total of 14 people took part in the course held at Hilton Doha. The course aimed to enable participants embark on a wellness enhancement journey to see how they can begin to make meaningful changes in their lives. After the conclusion of the two-part course, participants hopefully, will be able to make sustained changes for the betterment of their physical and emotional well-being.

Dr David Reilly said that TheWEL is predicated on the acknowledgment that the current model of healthcare, while it has made incredible advances over the years, is not proving sufficient in the face of rising modern epidemic of non-communicable diseases, such as chronic stress, obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

TheWEL aims to address this gap by empowering people with the ability to create self-sustaining growth in compassion-based self-care. These are very powerful attributes which, if developed, provide a strong foundation upon which we can all build our own health and wellness, giving us the opportunity to flourish and experience joy in our lives.’

Dr Sohaila Cheema, Director of the IPH, was influential in bringing the programme to Doha. She completed the course herself.

This IPH initiative provides participants with an opportunity to stop and examine some of the emotional and lifestyle related factors in their lives which might be leading to poor health and wellness. The course material and the exercises practised are extremely effective at encouraging participants to think clearly about the changes they can make to bring about positive changes and to then act upon those ideas in their day-to-day lives.’

Research carried out by TheWEL indicates that 88% of participants report long-term benefits five years after the course. Participants also report enhanced ability to deal with health problems, improved capacity to cope with challenges, and improved self-compassion.

Dr Ravinder Mamtani, Senior Associate Dean for Population Health and Capacity Building,  said they are extremely pleased to have been able to welcome Dr Reilly to Doha. He said that the innovative course encourages participants to unlock their own potential and make healthy choices in the long-term,  avoiding conditions like obesity, diabetes, stress and heart disease.

Visit qatar-weill.cornell.edu for updates and more information about IPH.