UAE benefits from outcomes of 50-year development process in fight against COVID-19


UAE benefits from outcomes of 50-year development process in fight against COVID-19



ABU DHABI, 28th June, 2021 (WAM) (FANA) — The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic highlighted the contributions of the UAE’s development process to its capacity to address the pandemic, underscoring the excellent performance of relevant systems established in the country, most notably in terms of the pandemic’s repercussions.

The UAE has successfully benefitted from its 50-year development process, capitalising on its achievements over the past decades to pass the COVID-19 test. Its strategy to address the pandemic is one of the most successful in the world, as confirmed by many global indexes that assessed the handling of the pandemic by the world’s countries, including the World Competitiveness Year Book, the Prosperity Index, and the Global Talent Competitiveness Index.

Figures from the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Centre (FCSC) stressed the fact that the UAE achieved significant progress in ten global competitiveness indexes covering health and prevention from 2019 to 2020, rising 31 places in the immunisation index and ranking first globally.

The UAE maintained its leading rankings in five other key health indexes covering the level of healthcare coverage, the presence of national early detection programmes, pre-birth healthcare coverage, immunisation against measles, and the absence of deaths and injuries resulting from natural disasters.

Dr. Omar Al Hammadi stated that the country’s proactive and balanced approach played a major role in the UAE’s performance in addressing the crisis, noting that the significant acceleration in coronavirus testing since the start of the pandemic, followed by the rapid pace of COVID-19 vaccinations, led to its effective handling.

Dr. Adil Sajwani, Family Medicine Physician, said that foreseeing the pandemic’s future enabled the UAE to address the crisis professionally from the outset, noting that the first phase of the pandemic involved a key period in determining how various countries addressed it.

Countering the pandemic at an early stage helped the national health system avoid the overcrowding of health facilities due to positive cases and, therefore, reduce pressure on the health sector, he added while pointing out that performing extended tests free of charge and increasing the number of health centres that conduct PCR tests and related protocols have helped control the crisis. Regarding vaccinations, the UAE is a leading country in terms of the number of vaccine doses offered.

Concerning the logistical readiness of the country’s health establishments, the UAE’s development process and its efforts to strengthen the health sector have helped it address the pandemic successfully.

An official report noted that the UAE has consistently focussed on advancing its health sector over the past decades, by promoting preventive care and reducing lifestyle-related diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and cancer.

In terms of proactive planning, the UAE’s National Agenda has adopted ten monitoring indexes covering deaths from cardiovascular diseases for every 100,000 persons, diabetic patients, obese children, average healthy age, rate of smoking, cancer deaths, the number of accredited health establishments, healthcare quality, the number of physicians for every 1,000 persons, and the number of nurses.

Moreover, the significant budgets allocated by the UAE to its health sector led to its overall success. In September 2018, the UAE Cabinet approved the 2019 federal budget worth AED60.3 billion, with AED4.40 billion being allocated to healthcare.