Dubai Health Authority official explaining the working of Disaster and Crisis Management Office at DIHAD conference in Dubai Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Dubai has formed a Disaster and Crisis Management Office in a significant radical transformation in the health security system in the emirate, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) announced on Thursday.

The primary mission of the facility is to raise the health sector’s preparedness level in Dubai, enhance its capabilities and enable it to address any emergency challenges. Additionally, it is responsible for developing and managing the emergency, crisis and disaster system, and other duties and tasks aimed at supporting community health security, enhancing Dubai’s position and ranking it among the global indicators of preparedness.

The Authority announced this at the International Conference and Exhibition for Relief and Development (DIHAD), which started on April 23 and continues for three days at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Many leaders from health institutions, scientists, doctors, experts, and specialists from the UAE and abroad attended the event.

Dr Khalid Abdullah Lootah, Public Health Consultant and Head of the Disaster Management Office, highlighted the exceptional capabilities supporting the office. These include the Operations and Control Centre, which is equipped with the latest electronic and intelligent systems for disaster and crisis management. The Dubai Disaster and Crisis Medicine Programme, internationally accredited by the European Center for Disaster Medicine and the American College of Surgeons, underscores the authority’s commitment to excellence and its global recognition.

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Advanced centre

He stated that, with the presence of a Disaster and Crisis Management office supported by an advanced centre and an internationally accredited programme, the authority significantly increased its abilities to deal with any health disaster or emergency. The crisis prevention and response system and many strategic partnerships include health and related institutions (local, regional, and global).

Dr Lootah explained that there are a group of specialisations and responsibilities that the office undertakes to implement including enhancing Dubai’s position and ranking it among the global indicators of preparedness, developing and managing the system of health emergencies, crises and disasters, and raising the level of the health sector’s preparedness towards catastrophes and crises, in addition to preparing and implementing preventive and proactive strategies and plans to address disasters and emergencies, train and qualify human cadres specialised in the field, and prepare scientific research and forecasting studies for the future.

Dr Lootah highlighted that the Authority’s participation and strong presence in DIHAD represents a significant opportunity to showcase the capabilities of the health sector in Dubai and its high-level capabilities in disasters, crises and emergencies. It is also an opportunity to build new strategic partnerships and strengthen the Authority’s relationships with various global health centres and institutions that specialise in this field and learn about the latest developments regarding technologies, intelligent solutions, methods, and protocols for responding to disasters and crises.

Disaster Medicine Programme

DHA had begun implementing the Dubai Disaster and Crisis Medicine Programme two months ago, to raise the level of health preparedness in Dubai and strengthen the system of prevention and health security towards any potential emergency cases through a unified and internationally approved approach.

Over the next five years, the Dubai Disaster and Crisis Medicine Programme aims to achieve several key objectives. It will enhance the skills and experiences of 10,000 government and private hospital leaders, medical, technical support, and nursing staff in Dubai. This comprehensive training will equip them to effectively respond to disasters, crises, and emergencies, significantly strengthening the health sector’s resilience and preparedness.