Dr. Kirill Micallef-Stafrace, who is a Sports Medicine Consultant in Abu Dhabi, UAE and an executive member of the European Federation of Sports Medicine, was the Chair of the Middle East Sports Medicine Conference. Dr. Micallef-Stafrace highlighted that an untapped source of sports medicine expertise lies within the region and especially the UAE.
Emphasizing on the growing importance of sports medicine in the region, Dr. Micallef-Stafrace said, “Globally the four main chronic diseases are cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases. Many of these share the same lifestyle risk factors, namely poor diet, tobacco use, lack of regular exercise and chronic psychosocial stress. Hence, exercise is recognised as an integral part of the management and prevention plans of most, if not all chronic diseases. This forms an integral part of the sports physician’s remit and is particularly important here in the UAE where lifestyle diseases are common.”
While there is a recognition that exercise is key to moving towards a healthier society, Dr. Micallef-Stafrace feels that this recognition has not led to a concerted effort by the stakeholders to ensure that exercise is effectively included in treatment plans.
“A structure must be in existence where exercise prescription for health is the norm, one that various health specialties can refer their patients to. During the first Middle East Sports Medicine Conference a concerted effort was made to focus not only the health of the athlete, but also at the vital role exercise plays in the treatment plans of various diseases,” says Dr. Micallef-Stafrace.
Some of this year’s conference discussions included shockwave therapy, corticosteroid injections in sport, nutritional strategies in sport, prevention of sudden death, and the history of sports medicine. The main objective of this conference is to share and impart knowledge in the field of sports medicine, including health promotion and disease prevention in order to encourage healthier lifestyles for people around the globe. The presence of international experts from all over the world to share their opinions and experiences on a number of relevant sports medicine topics is invaluable to the UAE society.
Running alongside the Sports Medicine Conference is an exhibition that has expanded from 7,000 sqm in 2011 to more than 9,000 sqm this year, with more than 110 exhibitors from 25 different countries showcasing the latest products and services within the Emergency, Primary Healthcare, Patient Safety, Rehabilitation and Dentistry sectors. Abu Dhabi Medical Congress is supported by the UAE Ministry of Health, Health Authority-Abu Dhabi (HAAD) and Dubai Health Authority (DHA).
Organised by Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions, the Abu Dhabi Medical Congress was open to all trade visitors and healthcare professionals from 14-16 October 2012. For information, please call +971 3365161 or visit www.abudhabimed.com.
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