Abu Dhabi: A total of 335,000 residents in Abu Dhabi’s Mussaffah area will be screened for coronavirus over the next two weeks.
The testing will be undertaken as part of the National Screening Project, which aims to provide widespread COVID-19 testing in the country.
To support the efforts, the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (Seha), the emirate’s public health provider, has launched a new screening centre that will increase daily testing capacity by 80 per cent.
In a statement sent today, Seha said the new centre, which will span 3.500 square metres, will allow for contactless registration, triaging and swabbing. Nurses will collect swabs from within fully sealed cabins to reduce the spread of infection.
It will complement the existing testing infrastructure available in Musaffah, including the centre in M42 sector, near the Musaffah Bazaar, and the centre in M1 sector at the Old Mussafah clinic. Both facilities were refurbished by Seha to enable COVID-19 testing, and can receive 7,500 residents per day.
Two additional health facilities are also set to support the National Screening Project. The first is located in M12 sector next to Al Masaood, and is managed by Burjeel Hospital, while the other is the Capital Health Screening Centre in M12 sector, with a capacity of 3,500 people per day.
All screening facilities in the Musaffah area will work together to ensure that those who present with symptoms have associated risk factors such as age or chronic diseases, or have come into contact with a confirmed case, have quick and easy access to safe testing.
“In line with the direction of the UAE’s leadership to protect our community, the Government of Abu Dhabi is coming together to support the healthcare sector and make sure that each and every resident of the UAE has easy access to a safe screening facility. This will swiftly help identify confirmed cases, which is critical to lessen the transmission of COVID-19. Expanding testing and ensuring healthcare service access is a key part of our strategy to combat the current public health challenge,” said Abdullah Al Hamed, chairman at Abu Dhabi emirate’s health regulator, Department of Health (DoH).
To ensure the safety of the visitors, Seha has partnered with volunteer portal, Volunteers.ae, to bring on-board trained assistants for on-ground and logistical support during the National Screening Project.
To efficiently screen as many residents as possible, all visitors to the new screening facilities will be triaged to determine their risk category, and to identify priority cases for fast-track testing.
Residents who come in for testing will have access to trained medical teams and volunteers who speak their languages, in a bid to increase awareness of COVID-19 preventative measures, as well as what to do if one experiences symptoms.
The National Screening Project was officially launched on April 30 as a collaboration between the DoH, the Abu Dhabi Public Health Center, Abu Dhabi Police, Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, Department of Municipalities and Transport, and Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship
The five screening facilities in Musaffah are now operational from 9am to 3pm, including on weekends, to support the two-week project.
In addition, SEHA is also set to launch new screening facilities in the Al Dhafra Region and Al Ain.