Dubai: A series of virtual forums was launched by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) this week, as part of UAE Innovates 2021.
Awadh Al Ketbi, Director General of DHA, stressed the importance of fostering and promoting a culture of innovation, especially in the health sector. He added: “Leveraging research, new technologies, innovation and data analytics has enormous potential to advance healthcare for the benefit of both healthcare providers and patients.
He noted that DHA will continue to focus on innovation in healthcare to advance the healthcare industry and provide patient-centered care. Senior DHA officials, including Dr Alawi Alsheikh Ali, Deputy Director General, and Dr Mohammed Al Redha, Director of the Project Management Office, Informatics and Smart Health, attended the virtual forum.
‘Doctor for every citizen’
Dr Alia Rafi, Acting Director of DHA Primary Health Care Sector Specialized Program Services Department, said telehealth is emerging as a globally vital service in the new care landscape. health. “DHA quickly adapted its existing telemedicine platform and nimbly expanded it to ensure we are providing community members with a virtual health consultation service during COVID-19,” said Dr Rafi.
DHA’s Doctor for Every Citizen telemedicine service has provided 88,000 telemedicine consultations since January 2020. Of the total consultations, 7,251 were medical consultations for COVID-19 patients and 13,437 were COVID-related consultations such as questions about vaccination eligibility, screening procedures, etc.
DHA launched the 24/7 Doctor for Every Citizen initiative in 2019. Given the importance of this service, especially for COVID-19 patients, the authority has expanded the scope and capacity of this service. From the start of this service until today, DHA has increased the number of doctors from ten to 52. DHA has increased the number of stations used for virtual consultations from six to 16. Doctors have also been trained to sign language to provide this service. to people of determination.
Dr Ali Al Sayed, Director of DHA Pharmaceutical Services Department, highlighted the success of the DAWAEE initiative for home drug delivery. DAWAEE is a home-based drug distribution initiative for DHA patients, seniors and determined individuals.
He said the DHA quickly expanded the scope of this service and extended free home delivery service across the UAE during COVID-19. The number of specialized mobile buses increased to 30 and DHA collaborated with Talabat and Aramex. The result was the home delivery of 1.5 million drugs and 500,000 medical items across the UAE over a one-year period from December 2019 to December 2020.
Dr Hamda Khansaheb, head of the Department of Medical Research in the Department of Medical Education and Research at DHA, reported that 78 scientific papers have been completed, which have been approved by the Scientific Research Ethics Board. ‘last year.
DHA has collaborated with many scientific and academic institutions for medical research. DHA and Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences conducted a joint study on the diagnostic accuracy of COVID-19 saliva tests in children.
Based on the study results, DHA facilities have adopted saliva testing for children aged three to 16. The research-driven, evidence-based movement was made possible through study. DHA, MBRU and the Al Jalila Foundation have also conducted a study on the genome sequencing of the COVID-19 virus. The authority also participated in the University of the United Arab Emirates’ research into the impact of COVID-19 on the mental health of medical professionals.
DHA also participated in a global study led by experts from the NIHR Global Surgery Research Unit, led by the University of Birmingham. The research looked at the outcomes of patients undergoing surgery after contracting coronavirus.
In addition, DHA Medical Education Department has also collaborated with Khalifa University and Sharjah University in the field of medical research.
3D printing for patients
Mai Al Dossari, Director of the Health Innovation Center at DHA, highlighted the achievements of the DHA 3D Printing Lab, which is located in the DHA Innovation Center and serves as a point of care for DHA hospitals.
The lab provides 3D printed models to surgeons at DHA hospitals who request patient-specific anatomical models to enable them to conduct detailed preoperative analysis.
Al Dossari said: “During the pandemic, we used 3D printing technology to print face shields with laser cut plastic. In addition, we used 3D printing to design flexible shoulder straps to make wearing a mask more comfortable. disease transmission. Al Dossari continued, “Technologies such as 3D printing offer enormous potential and we are keen to explore them with the aim of improving patient care.”