Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi interacts with a young patient at the facility Image Credit: Supplied

Cairo: Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and Chairperson of UAE-based global non-profit The Big Heart Foundation (TBHF), has conducted a comprehensive tour of the Southern Hospital within the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in Cairo.

This state-of-the-art medical facility, named the ‘Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi Building’ was meticulously renovated and upgraded with an Dh33 million contribution from TBHF.

During her visit, accompanied by a delegation from TBHF, Sheikha Jawaher inspected the Surgery and Intensive Care departments, laboratories, clinics and patient rooms. Engaging with patients and their families, Sheikha Jawaher conveyed heartfelt wishes, emphasising her understanding of their struggles, particularly those associated with the challenging journey of cancer treatment.

During her visit, Sheikha Jawaher said the Foundation strives to strive to alleviate the financial burdens associated with the treatment of cancer Image Credit: Supplied

Sheikha Jawaher underscored the crucial importance of holistic support, encompassing emotional and financial aid, to empower individuals and families in their fight against cancer and mitigate its effects.

‘Tribute to Egypt’

Addressing patients, families and medical professionals, she said: “In Sharjah and the UAE, we consider ourselves part of a larger family, and Egypt holds a special place as our second home. As Arabs, we share a duty of fraternity and philanthropy. Egypt, with its rich history and contributions to science and culture, deserves our support. Our initiative is a humble tribute to the generosity and morality that defines the Egyptian people”.

Recognising Egypt’s historical role in fostering knowledge and arts, Sheikha Jawaher said: “What we are doing is a modest acknowledgment of Egypt’s kindness, which has nurtured some of the brightest minds in the Arab world. Supporting healthcare development is our way of shouldering societal responsibilities, ensuring that healthcare, a fundamental right, reaches every individual. In the realm of cancer, a disease with profound physical and psychological impacts, we strive to alleviate the financial burdens associated with treatment.”

Increasing capacity

Accompanying Sheikha Jawaher during the visit, Mariam Al Hammadi, the Director-General of the Big Heart Foundation, along with the TBHF delegates, and was received by Dr Mohamed Abdel-Moati, Dean of the National Cancer Institute, Dr Rana Hamdy, Deputy Dean of the National Cancer Institute, along with several doctors and specialists.

They delved into the technical advancements introduced to the Southern Hospital through the upgradation process. Prof Dr Mohamed Abdel-Moati, Dean of the NCI, provided insights into the hospital’s efficiency in handling diverse medical cases and overcoming significant challenges. He praised the unwavering support of His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and Sheikha Jawaher.

He said: “The Southern Hospital at the NCI, post-rehabilitation, witnessed a remarkable 50 per cent increase in capacity. This includes 132 fully-equipped beds, 18 intensive care and surgical care rooms, two dialysis rooms, two isolation rooms, and six state-of-the-art surgery rooms.”

Specialised departments

The Southern Hospital, housed within the ‘Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi Building’ at the NCI, spans 13 floors, covering 16,000 square meters. It boasts modern equipment, multi-specialty laboratories, and radiology rooms. The hospital’s infrastructure includes 132 beds distributed from the third to the eighth floor, with the ninth and tenth floors dedicated to the Intensive Care department.

Featuring an inclusive ecosystem of laboratories and specialised departments, the Southern Hospital accommodates microbiology and chemistry laboratories, a Pre-PCR and Molecular Lab, CT and ultrasound departments, and a chemotherapy department for adults and children with 100 chairs. Additionally, the hospital ensures critical support through central air conditioning, power generation, and oxygen production.

The support donated by TBHF is the largest single donation received by NCI in its history and reinforces the extensive relationship between the UAE and Egypt, where healthcare and medical assistance have been a priority.