DHA performs free paediatric heart surgeries
Dubai, January 15, 2014
Dubai Health Authority has launched an initiative in which its cardiologists will perform free heart surgeries to treat cardiac congenital abnormalities.
Several young children can now breathe easy, due to free heart surgeries that were performed by DHA cardiologists as part of the Nabadat initiative.
Nabadat, the initiative launched by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and Mohammed bin Rashid Charity and Humanitarian Establishment, provides free medical assistance, surgery and post-surgical care to children whose parents cannot afford to pay for treatment of congenital heart diseases.
The DHA sponsors the treatment for Emiratis and the Mohammed bin Rashid Charity and Humanitarian Establishment sponsors treatment for expatriate patients.
More than 350 children (newborns to 19 year olds) with congenital heart diseases have undergone life-saving procedures since its launch in 2007.The treatment is open to both Emirati and expatriate patients.
Dr Obaid Al Jassim, head of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Dubai Hospital, said: “This time we have cooperated with a team of cardiac experts from Saudi Arabia and we will conduct 15 open heart surgeries and 15 diagnostic and/or interventional catherization procedures over the next few days.
“The aim of this initiative is to reduce the economic and physiological burden faced by families of children with congenital heart problems, provide a new lease of life young children as well as help in transfer of knowledge and skills. The initiative also helps reduce the cost of overseas treatment as such surgeries cost Dh300,000 ($81,665) on an average abroad.”
In the previous workshops, teams of experts from Italy and Sweden have taken part in this humanitarian initiative.
Dr Al Jassim said: “Since its inception in 2007, more than 350 patients have benefitted from this program. In this workshop, the youngest patient is a four month old baby and the oldest is a 17 year old boy with down syndrome who requires to undergo a procedure to repair his valve. Since compliance with medication can be challenging in down syndrome patients, we have to ensure we follow minimally invasive procedures.”
In terms of complex cases, he said most of the surgeries in this workshop are moderately complex and that the team will also perform an arterial switch procedure for a ten-month old baby. This is a complex procedure that the team has performed during the past workshops as well.
Forty per cent of the patients undergoing surgeries are Emiratis, the rest are expatriates and visitors. The patients are from Oman, India, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Jordan, Syria, Palestine, Kenya and Philippines.
As part of the Nabadat initiative, three more workshops will be held at Dubai Hospital in 2014 and DHA cardiologists also plan to travel outside the country to Sudan, Egypt and the Philippines to perform free paediatric heart surgeries for children in need. – TradeArabia News Service