Hamad Bin Khalifa University Press has recently published the proceedings from Qatar’s first ever Allergy Conference on its Open Access platform, QScience.com. The conference, held virtually in 2022, was sponsored by the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) in partnership with the Qatar Allergy and Immunology Society
Allergic diseases are common medical conditions that have seen an increase on a global scale, afflicting individuals with symptoms that may contribute to overall poorer quality of life. If not diagnosed correctly and treated accordingly, allergies may prove to be fatal in the conditions of anaphylaxis, severe asthma, and hereditary angioedema. Therefore, it is crucial to address the rising trend and recognize the degree to which allergic diseases have an impact locally in Qatar and internationally around the world. The conference proceeded with a special focus on educating both physicians and the wider community.
Scientific committees involved in the conference selected topics related to three major areas in allergy practice: systemic, respiratory, and skin allergy disorders. Submissions were received covering the topics of audits, case reports, service development, and clinical and basic research in the field of allergy. Additionally, timely and relevant discourse on the relationship between the COVID-19 pandemic and allergy conditions was also introduced during the conference, supporting the existing association between the pandemic and existing allergy disorders and practice.
“The publication of Qatar’s First Allergy Conference proceedings on QScience.com brings attention to how cutting-edge research in understanding allergy diseases are being conducted in Qatar and globally,” explained Dr. Rima Isaifan, Head of Academic and Journals Publishing at HBKU Press. “Hosting conference proceedings on QScience.com, such as this one, has given HBKU Press a competitive edge in the field of academic publishing. As we branch out to include conference proceedings of the leading summits in the region, we are providing our users with access to the most recent research available in the world today.”
Featured article First Allergy Conference in Qatar: Let’s explore allergy with a new lens by authors Dr. Maryam Al-Nesf and Dr. Tayseer Ibrahim, further delves into the importance of understanding allergy practice and the burden it presents on those afflicted with this medical condition, while recognizing the impact of COVID-19 on face-to-face interactions (including conferences such as this, which was initially delayed and then hosted virtually) and the crucial need to quickly understand the ways in which the virus affects those with allergic diseases.
Articles and discussions relating to the conference address concerns and findings surrounding patients with allergies, and their potential reactions to the virus as well as the vaccines necessary to help combat its potency. Using Qatar as a real-world example, highlighted article Chronic urticaria and COVID-19 vaccination: Qatar data by Saleema Purayil et al., examine the Qatari case study to further illuminate discourse on the holistic understanding of the role of COVID-19 vaccines in the lives of allergy patients and physicians.
Dr. Mariam Al-Nesf, Allergy[BF1] and Immunology Fellowship Program Director and Senior Pulmonary Disease Consultant at Hamad Medical Corporation, commented that the COVID-19 pandemic came as a respiratory infectious disease with symptoms overlapping with allergic diseases. Also, it affects patients with asthma and other allergic diseases to a higher degree. The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic and COVID-19 vaccination on patients with allergic diseases is one of the core topics that we focused on in the first Qatar Allergy Conference. Thanks to HMC’s partnership with HBKU Press, we were able to publish the conference proceedings and make them accessible through Open Access.”
The global nature of both COVID-19, as well as allergic diseases, presents a critical need to discuss medical findings on the association between the two and present these conclusions on an accessible platform. All proceedings are published in the Qatar Medical Journal, available on QScience.com. Journals on the site are often[BF2] indexed on major databases PubMed Central, Scopus, and Google Scholar.
[BF1]Should it be ‘and’ rather than ‘&’?
[BF2]I think either ‘All’ or ‘often’ should be removed, i.e. either ‘All journals on the sire are indexed’ or ‘Journals on the site are often indexed’