Dr. Nadia Bastaki
Dr. Nadia Bastaki Image Credit: WAM

Abu Dhabi: Dr. Nadia Bastaki, the first Emirati woman to be registered as a specialist in aviation medicine, has achieved her lifelong ambition and has become involved in the UAE space programme, conducting medical tests for UAE astronauts.

"In partnership with the Mohammad Bin Rashid Space Centre, I have participated in conducting medical tests for the team chosen to work in the UAE Astronaut Programme, where more than 100 candidates were screened for the programme until the finalists were selected," Dr. Bastaki told the Emirates News Agency, WAM.

Graduated in aviation medicine from the King’s College London, Dr. Bastaki has over 20 years of experience in aviation. She is currently working at Etihad Airways, with the country's first specialised centre in aeromedical medicine, which is accredited by the UAE Civil Aviation Authority.

She said that she had been motivated by the quote of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, that "Becoming number one is not impossible – the word impossible doesn't exist in our dictionary." This gave her confidence, she said, to "search for the competence through which I can achieve the first place and then serve my country."

She added, "The efforts of H.H. Shaikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, to empower Emirati women have contributed significantly to building generations capable of giving in all fields."

Dr. Bastaki also said her parents had helped her to think of entering a unique field in which she could realise her family's aspirations and hopes. "I chose to study medicine," she said, noting that the death of her mother, a trainee doctor, led her to take up the challenge to become a doctor to help people.

She concluded by saying, "Emirati women have the will and the potential that will enable them to carry the banner of creativity and excellence in all fields."