Rashad Al Moosa

Joint Managing Director, Partner, and Member of the Board

Gulf Drug

Versius – revolutionizing robotic surgery

At Arab Health 2022, Gulfdrug is showcasing the Versius Surgical Robotic System that is being touted as game changer in robotic surgery. In an interview, Rashad AL Moosa, Joint Managing Director, Partner, and Member of the Board, Gulfdrug LLC, spoke about Versius as well as about how emerging technologies are improving patient care. Excerpts:

What are you showcasing at Arab Health 2022?

Gulfdrug prides itself in being a provider of superior, technologically advanced medical equipment, in order to assure the best outcomes for patients. This year, we are excited to showcase the Versius Surgical Robotic System, a game changer in robotic surgery. This robot is easily adapted into existing workflows and allows for the use of only the required arms for the procedure. The Versius provides enhanced dexterity and accuracy during surgery, whilst also offering ergonomic working positions for the surgeons, thus reducing stress and fatigue.

A key theme this year is healthcare transformation. What does healthcare transformation mean to you?

In the era of the fourth industrial revolution, the healthcare sector is affected heavily with these changes. In the coming few years, the way of delivering clinical care will transform from being hospital centric care to patient centric care.

All the clinical activities right now are taking place in the hospital where this will be transformed in the future and most of the activities will be done at the patient’s home during the patient’s convenient time. Technology is playing an important role in enabling the transformation into a patient centric model, as this objective can only be achieved by adopting advanced information technology solutions like AI, Robotics and Machines Learning.

To what extent will emerging health technologies such as AI, IoT and big data influence your business priorities?

We are ahead of the game. New technology such as AI and Big Data are integrated with our current systems to upgrade to future technologies.

As the world continues to pull out of the pandemic, are there any challenges still faced by your business, and how are you addressing these?

The largest issue was the ability to get prioritized deliveries and orders of medical supplies on a global scale and we hope this is now in the past. We still see the logistics sector having a severe impact on deliveries and international shipping, as the cost of shipping has increased 10 fold in the past 12 months. We hope the international community comes together to resolve this. The impeding costs of logistics affects healthcare globally.

What will your business be prioritising in ‘post-pandemic’ times?

It is important for all medical companies, providers and personnel to work together to ensure everyone gets equal access to affordable healthcare to ensure lives are saved. This is our top priority. As the pandemic rages on, we must move to the endemic stage whereby we manage the situation based on scientific recommendations. Our role will be to provide services in advance to ensure a smooth transition from pandemic to endemic . This means we all have to live with the Coronavirus as part of our lives, just as we do with the flu. We will also provide services and products that will cater to the endemic with emphasis on growing our portfolio in robotics, AI and Integrated Medical Technologies.

How important is the resumption of international travel to your business?

First of all, it was the biggest mistake due to fear mongering of media to halt international travel. Travel allows medical personnel to provide their services where needed. Not to mention, less than 5% of airplanes are dedicated to cargo. Therefore, passenger airlines play a critical role in delivering medical goods on a global scale, not limited to vaccines. International travel also employs millions of people who are affected by flight cancellations.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

When we look at our colleagues from the west to east, we are all grateful and thankful to the UAE government for having a clear and decisive decision-making policy in the UAE that allowed us, in collaboration with the government and private sector healthcare providers, to keep the UAE open throughout most of this pandemic. We would like to thank all parties, from small to big, and all the support services. A big thank you and hats off to everyone, from us as medical providers and suppliers, for assisting us in making everything we have today possible, and for the countless lives saved.