Doha – November 15, 2023: Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar (WCM-Q) hosted a conference for primary care physicians organized entirely by graduates of the college—the first time such a conference has been held.
Over the course of two days, WCM-Q-trained physicians delivered in-depth lectures, engaging roundtable discussions, and debates to share the latest updates in clinical best practice 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 WCM-Q’s mission to ensure its alumni make valuable contributions to Qatar’s thriving healthcare sector.
The conference was co-directed by Dr. Mahrukh Rizvi, who graduated from WCM-Q in 2011 and then undertook training in internal medicine, nephrology and critical care medicine at elite healthcare institutions in the US, before returning to WCM-Q in 2022.
The other co-directors of the conference were Dr. Reshma Bholah, assistant professor of pediatrics at WCM-Q and 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.
Dr. Rizvi, now assistant professor of medicine, said: “As a graduate of WCM-Q and now a professor at the college, it was a great feeling to be able to bring so many fellow alumni together to share our 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.”
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 treatment of type 2 diabetes.
Day Two began with a roundtable discussion about methods for managing challenging clinical dilemmas, before lectures providing updates on approaches to congestive heart failure, diagnosis and management of asthma, esophageal disorders, updates in cartilage injury and osteoarthritis, and pharmacological management of musculoskeletal pain in Qatar. The conference concluded with a practical demonstration of simple daily exercises primary care physicians can teach to patients to manage degenerative joint disease of the knee.
Other WCM-Q alumni now at the college who contributed to the conference included Dr. Salman Al Jerdi (Class of 2012), now assistant professor of neurology, and Dr. Zahra Naqvi (Class of 2014), now assistant professor of psychiatry.
Other alumni contributors included Dr. Khalid Al-Khelaifi (Class of 2008), Dr. Muneera Al-Muhannadi, Dr. Noor Nabeel Suleiman and Dr. Fouad Otaki (Class of 2009), Dr. Tania Jaber and Dr. Mohammed Al-Hijji (Class of 2011), Dr. Rama El-Yafawi (Class of 2012), and Dr. Alreem Al-Nabti (Class of 2016). Of those, Dr. Al-Khelaifi, Dr. Al-Muhannadi, Dr. Jaber, Dr. Al-Hijji, and Dr. Suleiman are WCM-Q affiliate faculty.
Guest speakers at the conference were Dr. Mohamed Salem Abdelgelil of Hamad Medical Corporation, and Samantha Poblete van Rijswijk of Aspetar, while Dr. Stella Major, associate professor of family medicine in clinical medicine at WCM-Q, also appeared as a speaker.
Dr. Thurayya Arayssi, vice dean for academic and curricular affairs at WCM-Q, said: “The great success of this event shows that our work to establish a strong and highly engaged alumni community is paying dividends for the healthcare sector in Qatar. A growing number of alumni who leave Qatar after graduation to continue their training in the US are returning to Qatar to serve the community here, help educate the next generation of physicians, and set the very highest standards for patient care.”
The conference was accredited locally by the Ministry of Public Health’s Department of Healthcare Professions – Accreditation Section and internationally by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME).