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Abu Dhabi: The Department of Health - Abu Dhabi (DoH) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the American Heart Association (AHA), the world’s leading nonprofit organisation focused on heart and brain health for communities around the world.

This partnership aims to enhance access to distinguished healthcare services for heart attack and stroke patients across Abu Dhabi to implement common treatment platforms to ensure patients are rapidly transported to and treated at the appropriate hospital.

Healthcare excellence

As a testament to the Department’s leadership in healthcare excellence, and cementing Abu Dhabi’s position as a leading destination for healthcare, this collaboration is the association’s first agreement with a government entity outside the United States to adopt a healthcare ‘systems of care’ approach, integrating and optimising all steps and aspects of care.

The agreement was signed by Dr. Saleh Al Ali, Executive Director of the Centre of Emergency Preparedness and Response (CEPAR) at DoH, and Puja Patel, Vice President, International Quality and Global Certification at the American Heart Association.

The signing ceremonry was conducted in the presence of Dr. Noura Al Ghaithi, Under-Secretary of DoH; Dr. Aysha Al Khoori, Executive Director Healthcare Facilities Sector at DoH; Dr. Mohammed Alkuwaiti, Consultant Neurologist at Tawam Hospital; Dr. Abdulmajeed Al Zubaidi, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist; Chris D’Esposito, American Heart Association Senior Vice President; Rami Khattar, MENA General Manager; Khaled Shkair, Senior International Program Manager; Mohammed Almzayen, Senior International Program Manage; and Julia Mora, International Director of Healthcare Quality and Certification from the American Heart Association.


The two parties will cooperate to integrate the Association’s standards for chest pain and stroke centres to extend guideline-directed care for patients across their healthcare journey.
The collaboration will focus on six components: stakeholder coordination, education, public awareness, sustainability, rehabilitation task force, and evaluations.

These components will be delivered through a certification programme that will build on existing infrastructure, including the expertise of the Abu Dhabi Stroke and STEMI Task Forces and the Association, with its regional and international expert resources.

Additionally, stroke and cardiac certifications will assist hospitals in improving patient care, differentiating themselves from competitors, and attracting top talent.

On this occasion, Dr. Saleh Al Ali said: “The Department of Health - Abu Dhabi (DoH) is committed to collaborating with global strategic partners and unifying efforts to further advance and accelerate access to quality care for patients in Abu Dhabi and around the world.

"Through this collaboration, we look forward to achieving excellence with the American Heart Association to advance our stroke and cardiology ventures, strengthen the Emirate’s system of care for heart disease and stroke patients, and safeguard the health and well-being of the community,” Dr Al Ali added.

Awareness drive

The agreement will see both entities developing and implementing an awareness campaign on stroke and heart attack symptoms and the importance of calling emergency services.

This collaboration aims to establish improvements and systems that can be sustained by DoH and its stakeholders, leveraging the Association’s certification and quality improvement programmes as resources for all participating hospitals and EMS agencies.