If you are a new mum in Abu Dhabi, or about to have a baby soon, there are free of cost prenatal and antenatal check-ups that you can take advantage of during the month of August, to ensure your health as well as your baby’s.
The Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC) organises a ‘Maternal and Child Health’ programme in August every year, which provides mums with the option to visit any of the participating maternity and children’s hospitals in Abu Dhabi.
Gulf News spoke with Dr Omniyat Al Hajeri, the Executive Director of the Community Health Sector in ADPHC, to find out how women and children can benefit from the programme.
Which health checks can you get through the programme?
“The programme includes a set of preventive initiatives and periodic checkups related to maternal and child health, in conjunction with maternity and children's hospitals in Abu Dhabi. The programme is designed to improve the health of women, infants, children, and families and the opportunities that are available to them, through approaches that are preventive and evidence-based,” Dr Al Hajeri said.
The three screening programmes that are available to women and children are:
1. Antenatal screenings
The aim of this screening is to ensure that all women receive counselling during the pre-conception and antenatal period.
2. Newborn screenings
The purpose of the Newborn Screening Programme is to detect potentially fatal or disabling conditions in newborns as early as possible. This is done in four ways:
- physical examination
- hearing screening
- screening for critical congenital heart disease
- heel prick test. This is a major test to detect developmental, genetic, and metabolic disorders in the newborn babies.
3. Well Child Visits
Well Child visits allow the doctors and the parents to keep a close eye on the child's general health and development. It also helps them identify possible health problems at an early stage, giving the child better chances of receiving proper treatment and necessary medical supervision.
The programme includes a set of preventive initiatives and periodic checkups related to maternal and child health, in conjunction with maternity and children's hospitals in Abu Dhabi.
Do I need to pay for the visits?
According to ADPHC, all the screening within the programme are covered according to the individual’s insurance.
Which hospitals can I go to?
The antenatal and newborn screenings are available at all 31 maternity hospitals and clinics in Abu Dhabi, licensed by the Department of Health. To find the hospital or clinic nearest to you, simply follow these steps:
- Visit the Department of Health website, www.doh.gov.ae, and click on ‘Resources’.
- Click on ‘lists and tools’ which will take you to a page with a list of services.
- Select ‘Find a healthcare facility’ and the website will then provide you with all the hospitals and clinics around your area of residence that you can visit.
Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City (SSMC)
Mediclinic Al Noor, Khalifa City
Mediclinic, Airport Road
Dar Al Shifa Hospital
NMC Hospital, Abu Dhabi
NMC Royal Hospital, Khalifa City
NMC Royal Women's Hospital, Abu Dhabi
Ahalia Hospital, Abu Dhabi
Ahalia Hospital, Mussaffah branch
Phoenix Hospital, Mussaffah
Lifeline Hospital, Abu Dhabi
Lifeline Hospital, Mussaffah
Al Salama Hospital
Burjeel Medical City
Danat Al Emarat Hospital
Al Dhafra Hospital
Tawam Hospital, Al Ain
Mediclinic Hospital, Al Ain
Mediclinic Hospital, Al Jawhara, Al Ain
Specialized Medical Care Hospital, Al Ain
Emirates International Hospital, Al Ain
Ain Al Khaleej, Hospital
Al Ain Hospital
NMC Hospital, Al Ain
Burjeel Farha Hospital, Al Ain
Burjeel Royal Hospital, Al Ain
For Well Child visits, you can visit any of the ‘ambulatory healthcare centres’, managed by Ahu Dhabi Healthcare services company (SEHA). Seha operates 38 healthcare centres across the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. To find a centre near you, simply follow these steps:
- Visit the Seha website – ahs.seha.ae
- Click on ‘Our facilities’ from the menu on the top of your screen.
- From the dropdown menu, select your city of residence (Abu Dhabi or Al Ain) and then select ‘Well baby clinic’ under ‘specialty’.
- The website will then provide you with information on all the centres you can visit.