Dubai: An Indian expat, who suffered a brain stroke, became the first patient to be medically transferred to India from the UAE after he was flown on a chartered air ambulance from Dubai to Kochi in Kerala last night, the Indian Consulate in Dubai confirmed to Gulf News on Wednesday.
Neeraj Agrawal, Press Consul, said, “The patient Dileep Sabreesh, 30, suffered a brain stroke. His family had approached us with a request for the transfer. We helped in getting the necessary approvals, both from here and India, to initiate the process. The medical transfer happened last night.”
He said, “This is the first medical transfer of a patient from the UAE to India since March 25 when the flights were suspended.”
Meanewhile, the air ambulance company that flew the patient said permissions for the transfer on a chartered air ambulance were granted by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and Indian Central Government Home Department, Health Department and Kerala Government, with special efforts put in by V. Muraleedharan, Minister of State for External Affairs in Kerala, in addition to Indian Embassy and Consulate officials in the UAE and Indian Consulate Medical Council member and volunteer Praveen Kumar.
Nijil Ibrahimkutty, CEO of the company, Universal Medical Transfer Services, said, “This is a milestone transfer for us given the present global crisis and the minimal transfers taking place due to restricted air spaces globally. We have gone the extra mile in ensuring all necessary COVID-19 protocols supported with exhaustive safety precautions.”
“We are grateful and thankful for the support and efforts from both UAE and Indian governments for their humane approach towards residents and citizens despite these tough times. Our thoughts are with the patient and their family and we wish him a rapid and full recovery,” he added.
Meanwhile, Dr Boby Varkey Maramattom, Senior Consultant, Neurology, at Aster Medicity in Kochi, where the patient was taken, told Gulf News in an email: “The patient is now conscious, he is able to move all four limps. He has mild weakness on the left side but he is able to lift his left hand and left leg."
He said, "The patient is oriented to time and place and he is getting better. After the results of some tests are out, he will be shifted from the designated ward to the neurology general ward and then sent for rehabilitation.”