The UAE is today celebrating the annual International Day of Epidemic Preparedness on 27th December, which was launched by the United Nations (UN) to promote the importance of preventive action against epidemics, highlighting the major importance of global partnerships and solidarity.
Humanitarian and financial initiatives provided by the UAE have played a key role in supporting health and medical programmes, implementing vaccination campaigns, and providing vaccines for many viral diseases around the world, most notably against Malaria, Cholera, Guinea Worm (Dracunculus medinensis) and Poliomyelitis. The coronavirus pandemic has again highlighted the importance of the UAE’s role in combatting viral diseases, through providing urgent humanitarian and medical aid to some 100 countries, benefitting millions of frontline workers in their fight against the pandemic. Locally, the UAE has set unique examples of handling the pandemic since the early stage of the crisis, in terms of the number of daily tests, monitoring, and responding to the needs of the health sector. The UAE was among the first countries to establish specialist centres for diseases and epidemics, known as "Coronavirus Control Centres," which are cooperating with all relevant authorities to be always prepared and draft strategic plans to combat epidemics. On the sidelines of the UAE Government’s meeting held in May 2020, entitled, "Preparations for the post-coronavirus, COVID-19, period," the country revealed that it is drafting a national preparedness and future epidemics management strategy, and stressed that the health sector is developing innovative ways to offer healthcare services to the public, including telemedicine and digital medicine. It is also increasing government investment in medicine and vaccine production to combat future epidemics. In April 2020, the Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation in Dubai announced a new partnership with the Mohammed bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences to launch a joint initiative, entitled, "Lets Advance Our Nation’s Health," aimed at combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, supporting the efforts to eliminate diseases and epidemics, and encouraging health research, in general. Since 1990, the UAE’s leadership has been committed to supporting the efforts to eliminate diseases that threaten mankind. The Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, was among the first to support these efforts, and his legacy is now being continued by the country, under the leadership of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
© Copyright Emirates News Agency (WAM) 2020.