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As part of Ifhas, a full clinical assessment of the health risks resulting from several chronic diseases is conducted, based on age and gender, along with a comprehensive clinical examination. Picture for illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Pixabay

Abu Dhabi: A new programme will now offer comprehensive health screenings, including a full medical examination, for Emiratis in Abu Dhabi.

The Ifhas programme periodic screenings will allow for early detection of diseases and thereby reduce the burden of chronic disease, Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC) said in a statement.

A variety of screening packages will be available under Ifhas for Emiratis aged 18 years and older.

“With chronic diseases becoming a global and local challenge and a leading cause of death, this distinguished health programme will see ‘Thiqa’ card holders above 18 years of age benefit from comprehensive medical examinations, helping them to potentially avoid the risk of a number of chronic and non-communicable diseases. This programme is in line with global experts and specialists’ recommendations, stressing the importance of adopting appropriate preventive measures, embracing healthy lifestyles and ensuring early detection of chronic diseases to prevent their development into an incurable stage,” the ADPHC statement said.

Full assessment

As part of Ifhas, a full clinical assessment of the health risks resulting from several chronic diseases is conducted, based on age and gender, along with a comprehensive clinical examination that addresses the most important health challenges and needs. The screenings are available at a number of primary health-care centres in Abu Dhabi, including Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (Seha) facilities, Mubadala Healthcare centres, Mediclinic, NMC and Burjeel Hospital Abu Dhabi.

Ifhas beneficiaries will be able to familiarise themselves with their health status by receiving a detailed medical report within ten days of the test. This will be supplemented with a detailed presentation of the report by the licensed medical centre where the examination took place.

Current state of health

“The Ifhas programme is one of the Abu Dhabi government’s strategic initiatives and has been launched in line with the vision of the nation’s leadership to provide world class health-care and wellbeing initiatives to the Abu Dhabi community across preventative and curative health care. The examinations for ‘Thiqa’ cardholders will provide a holistic view of the current state of public health, across all segments of society, and will contribute to the development of preventative and curative health programmes,” said Matar Al Nuaimi, the ADPHC director general.

“We have launched Ifhas for ‘Thiqa’ cardholders aged 18 and above across a number of primary medical facilities in the emirate to facilitate access. I urge all ‘Thiqa’ cardholders to benefit from it by taking the required tests and supporting both the UAE’s mission and ADPHC’s vision towards fostering a healthy and safe society,” he added.

Cardiovascular diseases

His call was echoed by Dr Omniyat Al Hajri, executive director of the community health sector at ADPHC. “I urge citizens of the target group to get tested regularly to detect cardiovascular diseases and their associated risk factors. We advise all members of society to adopt a healthy lifestyle, make healthy food choices, engage in various physical activities and avoid smoking and similar bad habits. Such initiatives will contribute to raising the quality of life for our community members,” Dr Al Hajri said.

Facilitating access

“This initiative will play a vital role in improving the health of many citizens and residents in the UAE and will prevent the onset of many serious and life-threatening conditions. Through our partnership with ADPHC, we will be offering these tests at all 46 of our Seha clinics in the country and encourage everyone who is eligible to make the most of this service. Through the wide reach of our network, we are ensuring that everyone in the community has easy access to this potentially life-saving service as part of our on-going commitment to promote a healthy lifestyle for all,” said Dr Anwar Sallam, group chief medical officer at Seha.

“The launch of the Ifhas programme is a great initiative that is well in line with the UAE’s commitment to the safety of its citizens, as it will support in raising health awareness across our communities. Early detection plays an essential role in reducing diseases and complications and increases the overall success of treatments and patient recovery. In general, Ifhas is an addition to the UAE’s health-care journey, at a time when Abu Dhabi is fast emerging at the forefront of the world’s medical capitals,” said Hasan Al Nowais, chief executive officer at Mubadala Health.

“We are delighted that our hospitals and our clinics in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Dhafra have been selected to be part of the periodic comprehensive screening programme. Mediclinic is steadfast in its support of ADPHC’s endeavours to curb the adverse effects of chronic diseases by facilitating early detection services to the community from a young age. Our team of specialised doctors and experienced nurses will ensure a seamless flow throughout the screening process for every patient and will provide the guidance needed for patients to lead a healthy lifestyle,” said Joe Hazel, chief operating officer at Mediclinic Abu Dhabi and Al Ain.

“NMC is privileged to be a part of the Ifhas programme launched by the ADPHC that aims at protecting the emirate’s residents’ health, thereby ensuring the safety of all workers by promoting excellence in public and preventative health concepts,” said Frank Delisi, senior vice-president, Operations, at NMC.

The Ifhas programme will be implemented in conjunction with the Department of Health — Abu Dhabi’s (DoH) ongoing Periodic Comprehensive Health Screening Programme (PCSP).

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“Burjeel Hospital Abu Dhabi and Burjeel at Marina, part of VPS group, are one of the top Emirati health-care organisations that provide wellbeing and health-care services for the Emirati community, extending care to all of those who live or visit the UAE. We, as a major health provider in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, are delighted to partner with ADPHC in the delivery of all services they set and confirm our support for their vision and mission. At Burjeel Abu Dhabi, we believe that healthy individuals are the building blocks of a healthy nation — a journey started by the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan in the 1960s and it is our duty to continue with it and pass it on to the generations to come,” said Dr Abdel Rahman Omer, chief executive officer at Burjeel Hospital, Abu Dhabi.