- The ‘Think Kidney’ campaign launched to commemorate World Kidney Day will focus on transplantation, organ donation, and improving kidney health through virtual sessions and outreach initiatives.
- The initiative, a collaboration between the public and private sector, will look to draw attention to encouraging preventive behavior and encourage discussion on the role of local and national health authorities in managing Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) with a special focus on organ donation and transplantation efforts.
In observation of World Kidney Day, Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC), Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU), Al Jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital (AJCH), Mediclinic City Hospital and Al Jalila Foundation (AJF) are launching a month-long awareness campaign around kidney disease, organ donation, and transplantation.
As part of the ‘Think Kidney’ campaign, there will be three virtual sessions amongst other initiatives that will put the spotlight on kidney health, Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), transplantation, organ donation, contributing to support transplant programs, and patient experiences. The first session will be held in English on March 14 and will have Pritvik Sinhadc, Dubai’s first-ever recipient of pediatric kidney transplant from a live donor, his father Bhaskar who donated his kidney to his son, Dr. Waldo Concepcion, Head of Al Jalila Children’s Organ Transplant Center, and Dr. Farhad Janahi, Consultant Urologist & Transplant Surgeon at Mediclinic City Hospital and Assistant Professor of Surgery at MBRU, led the team that operated on Pritvik.
The second session on March 16 will be conducted in Arabic and will feature Dr. Ali Al Obaidli, Chair of the National Transplant Committee, Hind Al Muhairi, a beneficiary of the kidney donation and transplantation program, and her brother Ali Al Muhairi, whose kidney Hind has received. The third will be the World Kidney Day Paeds x symposium series.
An approximate 4,500 patients are reported to be suffering from kidney failure in the UAE and initiatives like ‘Think Kidney’ are crucial in providing more information to patients, promote organ donation, and explain the significant improvements in quality of life after organ transplantation.
Jamal Abdulsalam, CEO, DHCA, said “Since 2015, we in Dubai Healthcare City have built expertise and capacity in kidney transplant. Through our enabling ecosystem and strategic partnerships, we were able to create a hub for organ transplant in DHCC with our three key players, Al Jalila Children’s, MBRU and Mediclinic City Hospital creating a unified front for organ transplantation in Dubai. In this context, our recently launched ‘Think Kidney’ Campaign will raise awareness on kidney health, transplantation and organ donation as well as highlight DHCC’s contribution in increasing access to quality care for people suffering from kidney diseases in Dubai and the UAE.”
World Kidney Day held on March 11th annually aims to raise awareness around the importance of kidney health and the contribution of these organs to the overall health of an individual along with shedding light on the frequency and impact of kidney diseases and attendant health problems across the globe.
Dr Abdulkareem Sultan Al Olama, CEO, Al Jalila Foundation, said “World Kidney Day is a global initiative that aims to raise awareness on the importance of our kidneys to our overall health. In the UAE chronic kidney disease is particularly prevalent partly due to high instances of associated illnesses like obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. At Al Jalila Foundation our top priority is to transform lives through medical innovation and with the support of our donors we invest in research and provide life-saving treatment to those suffering from kidney disease. Through our A’awen program we offer patients the opportunity to undergo the latest medical procedures at world-class medical institutions, offering them renewed health and hope for the future.”
Dr. Abdulla Al Khayat, CEO of Al Jalila Children’s, said “This initiative, which aims to raise awareness on kidney diseases, transplantation and donation will support Al Jalila Children’s effort in providing organ transplantation services for our young patients through our recently launched Organ transplant Center. In line with the national efforts to advance organ transplantation programs, the center provides the full spectrum of care to children suffering from organ failure including disease management, transplantation evaluation, organ transplant and post transplantation care.”
As part of MBRU’s mission to advance health in the region and provide innovative medical solutions to the community, the University runs the successful MBRU Organ Transplant Program, established in June 2016, that has developed a comprehensive framework for organ transplantation in Dubai through various public and private partnerships, to meet the growing demand in the UAE. Over the years, MBRU has further refined the Organ Transplant Program through signing a tripartite MOU with Mediclinic Middle East and Al Jalila Children’s to act as one-front in supporting organ donation and transplantation efforts in the UAE, organizing the first UAE Organ Transplant Summit, and the inaugural UAE Organ Donation Forum. Until date the program has had 20 successful organ transplantation surgeries from living and deceased donors.
Matthew Dronsfield, Hospital Director at Mediclinic City Hospital, said “The renal transplant program has achieved outstanding patient outcomes since its launch in 2016. The deceased donor program has resulted in a welcome increase in the number of renal transplants being performed and this has been enhanced through the development of the living donor program in 2020. The success of the renal transplant program has been made possible through the incredible work performed by a multidisciplinary team and through collaboration between the public and private sectors in order to provide patients access to the latest treatments and follow up care. This year the Think Kidney campaign will build on the achievements so far and highlight the importance of kidney health by raising awareness so that more patients can benefit from the expertise available in Dubai.”
Dr. Amer Al Zarooni, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Administration & Professional Services at MBRU said that the University is deeply committed to advancing health through comprehensive public-private partnerships and implementing quality community engagement programs that better outcomes for patients and improve the quality of life in the community. “Our goal is to advance health in the UAE and beyond. Our core values of connectivity, giving, and excellence is reflected in this collaborative ‘Think Kidney’ campaign. Our goal is to amplify the discussion around kidney health, organ transplantation, and organ donation in the UAE and bring international best practices in the field to the UAE in order for communities to live healthier lives,” he said.
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