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Health survey covers 10,000 expats, Emiratis

Ministry of Health to release findings later this year

Gulf News

Dubai: The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) on Sunday announced it has completed the field work under the National Health Survey, in which they surveyed 10,000 families, including expatriate residents and Emiratis.

The National Health Survey, approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and conducted in cooperation with the government entities in the country, was launched under the theme ‘My Health is a Priority’ in October 2017 across the UAE.

The survey, which included 150 scientists and researchers, achieved a response rate of 94 per cent from expatriate residents and local families. The results of the survey will be announced in the third quarter of 2018.

The results aim to enhance the national health policies and strategies and strengthen the health database, by aiding the formulation of resolutions and health policies in line with the UAE Vision 2021 to achieve a health global system. This will also contribute to sustainable development goals 2030 to enhance the competitive index in the UAE.

Dr Hussain Abdul Rahman Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for Health Clinics and Centres, said the national survey results will update many health strategic indicators such as behaviour and habits of individuals and risk factors, indicators of health care use, individual and family spending on health, environmental health, and vital signs of health. These indicators aim to reduce risk factors and non-communicable diseases, mortality and morbidity, thereby improving healthy life expectancy.

Meanwhile, Alia Zaid Harbi, Director of the Centre for Statistics and Health Research at MOHAP, said the response rate is a proof that the society is aware of the significance of the national survey in developing health and prevention services from diseases. “The high response rates also reflect the success of the awareness campaigns launched by the Ministry in cooperation with the stakeholders in the country through the media, display screens at many hospitals, health care centres, shopping malls, COOP, roadside advertisements, public transportation services, mobile SMS, and other promotional aids,” she added.

Harbi explained the completion of the field survey will be followed by a stage of analysis of the statistical data. She also pointed out the national survey targeted adults above the age 18, married women and children under the age of five, and elderly over the age of 60. It included data collection and blood tests such as glucose levels in the blood during fasting (FBG) and HbA1c blood lipids, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, haemoglobin levels, blood pressure, height, weight and waist measurements.