Nature Medicine | Spoonful of Medicine

Qatar proposes national council to direct research efforts

By Mohammed Yahia

NHS_Logo.300.jpgOn 3 April, Qatar unveiled its first National Health Strategy (NHS), which covers the next five years and includes a plan to launch a new national governance body to better manage resources and projects across the various biomedical centers in the small Persian Gulf state. The newly proposed Qatar Medical Research Council (QMRC) will be based in Doha and will be responsible for coordinating research efforts between institutions and communicating the scientific outcomes to policymakers.

Currently, most of the scientific work taking place in Qatar is in basic biomedical research, and in 2006 the country committed to raising science funding to 2.8% of its gross domestic product. “Given the generous resources and the unwavering strive to excellence, it is worthwhile considering how to enhance the current elements involved in biomedical science and health research in Qatar,” says Momtaz Wassef, a former director of Qatar’s Department of Biomedical Research at the Supreme Council of Health who advised on the new NHS plan.

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