Through the years, several industries have undergone transformative phases: financial service organisations are now more inclined towards digital readiness and personal banking, and media companies are now expanding their reach to capture a wider online audience. These developments have been made possible by rapid technological advances and are likely to continue into the future.

The healthcare industry is no exception to this digital evolution. The growth and expansion of virtual care via concierge telemedicine services is now becoming a fast growing option for doctors and patients.

In line with embracing change, the Singapore Health and Biomedical Congress (SHBC) 2017 will bring forth some of the most relevant issues that the modern health industry faces, and how doctors, clinicians, nurses, allied health professionals and academics may address them in their practice.

Now on its 15th year, the congress theme “Transforming our Health Ecosystem” aims to inspire all healthcare professionals to transform Singapore’s healthcare system to meet the evolving needs of the population, explained the event’s Organising Chairman and Family Medicine Consultant and Head for Hougang Polyclinic, Dr Lee Eng Sing.

“This year, we will share ideas and discuss how we can revamp the basic elements of Singapore’s current healthcare culture, including the norms, values, and assumptions to achieve a sustainable, value-based healthcare system.” Lee told MIMS in an exclusive interview.

“We will cover the full spectrum of the population who are living well, living with illness, going through medical crisis or require complex care, living with frailty or dying; as well as their mental states as they go through different periods of their lives,” said Lee.

Understanding the big picture

With the country’s health system in the midst of restructuring, SHBC aims to concurrently serve as the go-to platform where all aspects of transformation will be comprehensively discussed, analysed and deliberated upon, the doctor added.

“We want to help each delegate understand the big picture, while emphasising on the idea of teamwork, in which every act that we do in our respective fields, however small it is, adds up to something extraordinary.”

SHBC participants can look forward to a rewarding experience and gain useful insights through power-packed keynote speeches by prominent speakers. The speeches will be delivered by Better Value Healthcare Executive Director, Dr Anant Jani who will touch on Value-based Healthcare; Professor and Researcher at Université de Sherbrooke, Canada, Prof Martin Fortin who will touch on Beyond the Hospital to the Community; Chief Medical Officer and Global Director of Healthcare Transformation IBM Healthcare and Life Sciences, US, Dr Paul Grundy who will touch on Healthcare Transformation in the Developed Nations; and Professor of Psychology & Director at Singapore Management University, Prof David Chan who will share on what is involved when we move Beyond Healthcare to Health.

Other key topics to be discussed include the emerging threats of infectious diseases, irritable bowel syndrome, the importance of the ‘Art of Healthcare’ and latest developments on the infrastructure of precision medicine.

The congress will also address Singapore’s greying population through topics such as the complex care in geriatric medicine and making hospitals senior-ready.

Key congress highlights

On the opening day, discussions will revolve around how Singapore’s healthcare can go beyond quality to value, hospital to community, and beyond healthcare to health.

Day two will feature, for the very first time in SHBC’s 15-year history, a masterclass on organisational development which includes discussions on the emerging healthcare technologies, innovative approaches in complex acute care, as well as the application of design-thinking in healthcare.

"This part of the congress, I personally feel, is a catalyst for transformational care,” noted Lee.

A new batch of scientific researches will be represented this year. “The quality of abstracts submitted has improved year-on-year. This year is no different,” he elaborated. “Carefully deliberated by a panel of distinguished judges and reviewers, this year’s winners can be proud of gaining recognition on such a prominent national platform.”

“I am delighted to share that the calibre of abstracts submitted at SHBC has paved the way for greater research and collaborations in the science and medical field in the years after they were presented. We are proud that the Scientific Competition continues to provide this platform for more quality papers,” concluded Lee. MIMS

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