Part of the committee's remit is to educate people about the importance of organ donation Image Credit: iStock

Dubai Health Authority (DHA) is in the process of forming a local committee to regulate the transfer and transplantation of organs and tissues in Dubai.

The committee will be responsible for standardising and regulating the process of organ transplantation in accordance with the provisions stipulated in Federal Law No. (5) of 2016.

DHA recently hosted a workshop to share experiences and learn about the best practices and latest developments in organ transplantation.

Professional workshop

The workshop, held in the first week of November, was in partnership with the National Committee for Organ Transplantation and chaired by Dr Ali Abdulkarim Al Obaidli. It was also attended by representatives of the Donation and Transplantation Institute in Barcelona, Spain, led by Prof. Francesco Procaccio.

Dr Marwan Al Mulla, CEO of the Health Regulation Sector at DHA, praised the efforts of all relevant health authorities that worked on preparing a comprehensive national programme for organ donation and transplantation.

He said that producing the comprehensive programme will relieve the pain of patients and reduce the burden on the health sector, especially when it comes to chronic cases that will be treated according to legislation and standards based on international practices.

More than 70 medical and technical teams specialising in intensive and emergency care from both public- and private-sector hospitals in Dubai attended the workshop. They exchanged expertise and experiences and learned more about the latest developments in organ transplantation, especially in Spain. The workshop also included an overview of the UAE organ transplantation programme.

International best practices

Other topics such as standard procedures for organ donation, international best practices and the activation of the brain death protocol in the UAE were also covered.

Dr Al Mulla said the aim of the workshop was to ensure that the UAE followed uniform standards across all its medical facilities, raised the level of cooperation between intensive care units, enabled a large number of people to donate organs, and provided support for hospitals to enable donation.

The workshop also reviewed the national programme including activation of the brain death protocol. Since its launch, 30 patients with organ failure got a new lease of life as they received organ donations from nine brain-dead donors. Heart, lungs, liver, pancreas and kidneys were cultivated from donors.

The success of organ transplantation will provide one of the most important solutions to a number of chronic conditions such as kidney failure and liver failure. It will also enable the UAE to become an example in the application of best international practices and the latest healthcare standards.

Dr Hanan Obaid, Director of the Health Policies and Standards Department, pointed out that the health regulation department is in the process of forming a local committee to regulate the transfer and transplantation of organs and tissues in Dubai.

She also referred to the Ministerial Resolution No. 550 of 2017 and the rules and regulations pertaining to what constitutes brain death and the responsibility of local regulatory health authorities in the application of legislation and the implementation of its provisions.

Encouraging organ donation

The workshop also stressed on the need to raise awareness and educate healthcare professionals on the importance of expanding transplantation programmes. This will improve the chances of a normal life for patients with organ failure on the national waiting list.

It also stressed on the importance of launching awareness campaigns to encourage parents and relatives of patients to approve donation of organs of deceased patients and the importance of joining efforts to ensure the success of transplantation programmes in the country.

The workshop also discussed how prioritising such programmes gives relief to patients’ suffering from organ failure.

The need to adhere to and abide by the legislative provisions governing the organ donation process and the controls and conditions regulating this area was also highlighted.

Participants spotlighted the need to overcome the challenges facing the donation programme in the UAE. They highlighted the requirements to ensure the success of the programme in accordance with international best practices as well as medical and technical competencies.

The seminar concluded with Dr Fahad Baslaib, CEO of Rashid Hospital, taking the Spanish delegation on a tour of the hospital’s intensive care units showcasing the high-quality healthcare services provided to patients.