ABU DHABI, 28th March, 2023 (WAM) — In line with its constant efforts to consolidate Abu Dhabi’s position as a leading destination for healthcare, and to enhance the competitiveness and effectiveness of the healthcare sector for all patients in the emirate, while providing the highest levels of quality for all patients, Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH), the regulator of healthcare sector in Abu Dhabi, has announced Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Center (ADSCC) as a Centre of Excellence in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
The announcement is a testament to the centre’s state-of-the-art infrastructure and its high-quality services in bone marrow transplantation. Operating according to the best and latest international, evidence-based practices, and led by a team of internationally recognised experts, to achieve the best patient outcomes possible in the emirate and beyond.
Centres of Excellence are healthcare facilities which provide specialised and distinguished programmes with a high level of expertise and multidisciplinary resources, allowing them to conduct advanced medical procedures in specific clinical areas and conduct complex research to provide the highest levels of care, based on best global practices.
The announcement was made at a ceremony organised by Department of Health – Abu Dhabi at its headquarters in the presence of Mansoor Ibrahim Al Mansoori, Chairman of the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, Dr. Noura Al Ghaithi, Acting Under-Secretary of the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, Dr. Yendry Ventura, CEO of the Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Centre, and Dr. Fatima Alkaabi, Executive Director of Bone Marrow Transplant Programme at the Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Centre.
As a Centre of Excellence in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, ADSCC will provide an integrated and specialised range of surgical and non-surgical clinical services with world-class healthcare quality for patients who require hematopoietic stem cell transplantation for the treatment of blood diseases that includes autologous stem-cell transplantation, and allogeneic stem-cell transplantation and CAR-T cell therapy.
In addition, ADSCC will establish an integrated laboratory for the diagnosis of leukaemia, headed by an expert team of doctors specialising in bone marrow transplantation. Members of the experts’ team all hold an accredited American or Canadian Board or an equivalent certification.
Given its distinguished and extensive experience, ADSCC will contribute to advancing medical research, promoting continuing medical education, and providing training opportunities for medical personnel from various health facilities.
Dr. Al Ghaithi said, “The support and guidance of our wise leadership is what inspires us to continue propelling the healthcare sector in the emirate forward on a path of excellence. As we recognise the first Centre of Excellence specialising in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, we are enhancing the competitiveness and efficiency of the healthcare sector in Abu Dhabi and moving steadily towards cementing the emirate’s position as a leading destination for healthcare worldwide.
“Department of Health – Abu Dhabi has put forth a set of standards and guidelines to ensure operational efficiency and guarantee that Centres of Excellence in the emirate provide community members with a patient-centred healthcare experience. Patients in Abu Dhabi will have access to specialised healthcare facilities, which provide services of exceptional quality, safety, and high efficiency, led by experienced and competent healthcare professionals.”
To ensure that patients have easy access to high-quality bone marrow transplantation services, the Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Council was established, led by the Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Centre, where a group of haematology experts in the emirate come together to facilitate the provision of bone marrow transplantation services with close coordination with all parties.
Dr. Yendry Ventura, CEO of Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Centre, added, “It’s a great honour to be selected as a Centre of Excellence in bone marrow transplantation. Having been tasked with turning the vision of our wise leadership in bone marrow transplantation and cellular therapy into a reality, we will take this responsibility to ensure sustainable financial models and accessibility for all patients.
“Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant Programme provides a comprehensive and integrated ecosystem designed to implement innovative solutions, advanced research, and cell therapy, while leveraging educational platforms for healthcare professionals and scientists.”
Dr. Fatima Alkaabi, Executive Director of the Bone Marrow Transplant Programme at ADSCC, emphasised the ground-breaking aspect of the programme as the first of its kind to conduct a bone marrow transplant successfully in the UAE in July 2020, and the first centre in the Middle East to offer marrow transplantation for patients with multiple sclerosis in November 2022.
Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant Programme provides treatment to all patients through the Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Centre as well as Yas Clinic Khalifa City. Through comprehensive clinical care, starting from the initial consultation to assess the patient’s eligibility for treatment, conducting pre-transplant examinations, to assessing and searching for donors by offering access to international records of bone marrow banks and all cell collections by a specialised team. Stem cells are processed, characterised, and stored for clinical application under the supervision of adept scientists and laboratory technicians.
Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant Programme provides treatment for a range of benign and malignant blood disorders and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis with a comprehensive approach to autologous or non-autologous stem cell transplantation or advanced cellular therapies for both adults and children.
Department of Health – Abu Dhabi outlines six key indicators that are taken into consideration when evaluating whether the healthcare facility can be recognised as a Centre of Excellence. Among them are clinical outcomes, patient experience, patient safety and quality of medical services, levels of employee competency and the facilities’ medical education and research strategies. Department of Health – Abu Dhabi also assesses the accreditations to determine the healthcare facility’s eligibility.