Bahrain centre for disabled to open next June
Manama, August 24, 2011
A major new centre to help people with disabilities will commence operations in Bahrain next June, said a top official.
"Those with disabilities and special needs require a highly qualified team made up of specialists to look after them and the correct method of testing and evaluation," said Bahrain Union for the Disabled chairman Jassim Mohammed Seyadi.
"The most vital aspect now is to develop the human resources side to operations now.”
It was important for the new centre to develop a medical model appropriate to Bahrain's culture, he added.
A team of Bahraini and foreign specialists will be appointed to man the centre, which is designed to offer the best quality care to those with special needs.
The Abdulla bin Ali Kanoo Centre, which is under construction in A'ali, was named after businessman and long-term supporter of social work in Bahrain Abdulla Kanoo, who died last October.
It was named by the Royal Court due to Kanoo's pioneering work in social services and his support to humanitarian initiatives.
The centre is expected to revolutionise services for people with disabilities and special needs by introducing latest developments.
Plans were initially drawn up in 2008 with funding provided by His Majesty King Hamad and the private sector.
However, the global financial crisis meant the private sector was unable to meet its commitments.
A committee, which is headed by Seyadi and assisted by the Health Ministry, is responsible for putting together a team for the centre and adapting to a medical model for Bahrain.
"This is the right investment to bring in people from outside who specialise in the study of people with disabilities so that healthcare for the disabled in Bahrain is hugely improved," he said.
"There are models which evaluate the severity of each case and propose further methods of care all over the world, from Egypt, Jordan, the UK, the US and Germany.
"The best one comes from Germany, but we cannot simply cut and paste the methods - we have to adapt each component to Bahrain by taking into consideration cultural sensitivities."
Seyadi hopes to speed this process up so that the highest level of care for people with disabilities is provided by the centre. "Without this centre, all services are a mess and disorganised and this centre will be able to build a programme for life and help those with disabilities find their direction in life," he said.
Work on the centre, which is estimated to cost BD1 billion ($2.65 billion), is underway and the ministry is responsible for providing medical equipment and supplies.
The centre will comprise specialised clinics, including a dental clinic and a clinic specifically for diagnosis and physiotherapy. – TradeArabia News Service
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