ABU DHABI, 21st October, 2023 (WAM) — The UAE is committed to the promotion of excellent health and advanced medical practice, said Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence.
He made this statement after inaugurating the second edition of the two-day Emirates Paediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Congress hosted by Burjeel Medical City in association with global partners and the MENA Conference, which began here on Saturday.
“With the strong leadership and support of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, we are moving forward with ambitious plans to strengthen medical services available to children. Your initiative to establish a world-class Paediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Centre is certainly an embodiment of those goals and aspirations. This Centre will help to expand access to excellent child medical care, to promote high-quality services, and encourage partnerships with leading medical centres around the world,” the Minister, who is also the patron of the conference, said.
The theme of the congress is ‘International Get-Together of Paediatric BMT Physicians to Celebrate the Success of Saving Children Globally’. Delegates of the congress, attended by physicians from more than 23 countries, will provide valuable perspectives on the advancements, innovative techniques, and best practices in Paediatric Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation (HSCT) and Cell Therapy. The congress, which was launched after the first Paediatric BMT in the UAE that took place in 2022, is being attended by 550 local and international delegates.
Supported by the UAE’s advanced healthcare infrastructure and inspired by the vision to turn Abu Dhabi into a life sciences hub, Burjeel Medical City set up a comprehensive bone marrow transplant centre in 2022, where the first bone marrow transplant from a donor to a child took place. Since then, the flagship facility under Burjeel Holdings has performed 30 consecutive BMTs for children suffering from various blood disorders, including leukaemia, with zero mortality. These procedures have benefitted children from India, Pakistan, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Morocco,
Libya, Afghanistan, Algeria, Nigeria, and Sudan, cementing the UAE’s position as a global healthcare destination.
Dr. Shamsheer Vayalil, Founder and Chairman of Burjeel Holdings, said, “The number of Paediatric BMTs performed in the UAE is increasing yearly, and children with cancers and other blood disorders have access to life-saving treatments in our own country. Encouraged by their support, we are investing heavily in the development of acute and complex Paediatric services. This congress is an opportunity to reflect on the amazing work that is being done around the world and here in Abu Dhabi and will see experts from across disciplines come together to engage in an informative dialogue about the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”
Dr. Zainul Aabideen, Consultant and Head of Paediatric Hematology, Oncology and BMT and Conference Chair, said, “From pioneering the first allogeneic Paediatric BMT in the UAE to performing life-saving transplants, we are dedicated to healing and supporting children with devastating diseases. We believe sharing our knowledge and experience with experts from around the world and gathering insights will help us advance Paediatric transplantation care together. Our distinguished speakers will provide valuable perspectives on the advancements, innovative techniques, and best practices in Paediatric HSCT and Cell Therapy.”
Prof. Rupert Handgretinger, Consultant, Paediatric Hematology Oncology and BMT, and Conference Co-Chair, said, “It is our aim to create an environment that encourages active participation, engagement, and the sharing of expertise among all attendees. Let us collectively work towards improving child health in the UAE and the region.”
The two-day conference will conclude on Sunday.