Ministry of Health and Prevention lights up UAE landmarks in red to raise tuberculosis awareness

Published Tuesday, 26 March 2024

The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) has lit up prominent landmarks across the country in red, celebrating World TB Day on March 24 being observed this year under the theme "Yes! We can end TB." Illuminated landmarks included Dubai Frame, Mohammed bin Rashid Library, Fujairah Fort, Zayed Sports Complex in Fujairah and Ajman Museum.

The initiative, which was conducted in collaboration with various partners and institutions, aimed to raise public awareness about tuberculosis, emphasizing the importance of early detection and prevention.

In addition to the landmark illuminations, MoHAP organized an informative lecture for its employees as well as a series of educational activities nationwide, targeting diverse community segments, including individuals in health centres and workplaces. These activities aimed to enhance the public's understanding and awareness of tuberculosis, focusing on the disease's symptoms, causes, and preventive strategies.

World TB Day is not just a ceremonial event but a pivotal moment to broaden public understanding about tuberculosis, highlighting its prevention, treatment, and the significant public health challenges it poses.

Every year, this day provides a crucial platform to galvanize international efforts aimed at curtailing the spread of tuberculosis and enhancing the quality of care and support available to those impacted by the disease. Additionally, World TB Day’s celebration in the UAE highlights the diagnostic and therapeutic services offered by the Ministry free of charge to those infected, further emphasizing the commitment to addressing this pressing public health issue.

Supporting international efforts

HE Dr. Hussain Abdul Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for the Public Health Sector, said: "World TB Day provides an ideal opportunity to showcase the UAE's success in cutting down tuberculosis incidence, highlighting our persistent efforts to enhance global collaboration, back scientific research, pioneer new treatments, and craft sustainable solutions.”

Al Rand added that the UAE follows the WHO Regional Action Plan on Tuberculosis for the Eastern Mediterranean Region 2023-2030, underscoring our commitment to sustainable development goals and combating the disease."

Dr. Al Rand emphasized that the Ministry has launched comprehensive preventive measures to curb and manage tuberculosis's spread, collaborating closely with strategic partners. These measures include improving the surveillance system for tuberculosis, setting up efficient monitoring frameworks, ensuring uninterrupted access to medications, and providing targeted training for healthcare professionals.

The measures also feature proactive screenings to detect tuberculosis early among residency applicants, both prior to their entry into the country and after their arrival, along with routine screenings to facilitate the prompt identification of the disease.

Community awareness campaigns

For her part, Dr. Nada Al Marzouqi, Director of the Department of Public Health and Prevention, reaffirmed that the Ministry is committed to enhancing public health awareness about tuberculosis through targeted campaigns, programmes and comprehensive awareness events that foster community engagement. Through such initiatives, we look forward to highlighting the importance of early detection and the need to adopt preventive strategies to avert the spread of the infection. “Our initiatives are bolstered by sophisticated healthcare systems as well as strategic plans aimed at enhancing public awareness and knowledge.”

The Ministry, alongside its partners, continues to battle tuberculosis, ensuring seamless access to care and support services for patients. These collective efforts play a pivotal role in fortifying the healthcare system, curbing the spread of communicable diseases, fostering a sustainable, healthy environment, and ultimately promoting health and well-being for all members of society.

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