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  • Building a Neurological Institute: A Middle East Experience

    Final Number:

    Dominic Venne MD, MSc, FRCSC

    Study Design:

    Subject Category:

    Meeting: Congress of Neurological Surgeons 2013 Annual Meeting

    Introduction: In 2006, an agreement was signed between Cleveland Clinic and Mubadala Development Company, a government owned company, to design, manage and operate a state-of-the-art 364-bed hospital in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The first priority was to address the region’s most pressing healthcare needs and to reverse the trend of patients travelling abroad for treatment. In line with Abu Dhabi Government mandate, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi (CCAD), planned to open in 2014, will become a key component of the Healthcare’s strategy to establish an integrated world-class healthcare network. Like its counterpart in the United States, CCAD will be organized into specialized institutes including a fully integrated Neurological institute.

    Methods: To successfully achieve these goals, Cleveland Clinic had to deploy significant human and technological resources. Considering the complexity of contemporary medical institutions, the ineluctable dependency with medical technologies and financial restraint, building a tertiary/quaternary multi-specialty facility represents an unparalleled challenge. Despite its complexity, the technical aspect of such project, from planning to equipment purchasing, represents the easiest part. Preserving the values and culture from the main institution, maintaining the highest standards of care and implementing procedures/policies becomes more challenging when dealing with a multicultural workforce.

    Results: To do so, several strategies can be used. Recruiting high quality health care providers is of the uttermost importance. While preserving and beneficiating from cultural diversity, maintaining a common medical culture is extremely important. Embedded clinical care pathways into the medical electronic record promote best practice guidelines compliance. Multidisciplinary programs bring together caregivers and improve the decision making process. Finally clinical, operational, and financial metrics should be used to measure outcomes and the efficacy of care path.

    Conclusions: To build a successful health care organization with the highest international standards, global leadership mindset, cultural awareness and emotional intelligence are the cornerstones of such enterprise.

    Patient Care: This paper reviews the scientific, cultural and economic challenges associated with the establishment of a North American ‘state-of-the-art hospital’ in the Middle East.

    Learning Objectives: At the end of this presentation, attendees should understand the complexity related with hospital building, culture exportation and also the challenges with multicultural team leadership. Initially limited to overseas operations, this situation has become an international reality with recent global population shifting and tidal wave of immigration.


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