Abu Dhabi Health Authority expands the premarital examination program to cover 570 genetic medical conditions

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The Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, the emirate’s healthcare regulator, has added an optional genetic test to the emirate’s premarital screening programme. This step falls within the framework of the preventive measures that the department is keen to implement to protect the health and well-being of community members.

This genetic test is expected to cover 570 medical conditions, while its inclusion in the premarital examination program aims to improve the health and quality of life of families by protecting their members from genetic diseases.

The initiative is based on the advanced health care infrastructure and its innovative system to include TSTIME sequencing technology and predict possible medical conditions among members of society, and contribute to supporting the efforts of the UAE Genome Program and turning them into tangible clinical results. This step also comes within the framework of the department’s continuous efforts to improve the patient’s experience in the health care sector in its various stages, including diagnosis, medical consultations based on genetic factors, and the provision of medical solutions for reproduction.

This preventive program prepares to identify carriers of genetic diseases for people planning to marry, and to detect the susceptibility to transmission of any genetic and chronic diseases to their offspring, which require complex care. It will also put advanced assisted reproductive solutions and other treatment options within the reach of couples.

A group of trained family physicians will lead the pilot phase of the programme, which will begin to be offered at two outpatient healthcare services centres: Oud Al-Tawbah Center for Diagnostic and Comprehensive Screening; Al Maqtaa Health Center.

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In this regard, Dr. Asmaa Al-Mannai, Executive Director of the Research and Innovation Center at the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi, said: “The integration between the UAE Genomics Program and the Premarital Testing Program is a clear indication of the relentless efforts of the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi to reach a healthier society in the country. Abu Dhabi Emirate.This step embodies one of the ambitious preventive measures to protect and preserve the health and well-being of community members.As a leading destination for life sciences, Abu Dhabi is today an incubator for a group of the most innovative healthcare solutions that benefit the treatment of patients, improve their quality of life and enrich the quality of life of generations. There is no doubt that the expansion of the premarital examination program comes in accordance with the highest levels of quality of care, through the application of best practices and the introduction of the latest technologies alike.”

Al-Mannai added: “In cooperation with its wide network of partners, the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi is committed to providing the residents of Abu Dhabi with the latest and most advanced treatment options, in addition to providing them with high-quality healthcare that guarantees them a bright future. And to establish Abu Dhabi as a leading destination for life sciences and innovation, these examinations represent measures Preventive measures will support couples looking for optimal medical advice, to help them build a healthy future for their children and reduce their risk of genetic diseases.

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On this occasion, Her Excellency Dr. Omniyat Al-Hajri, Executive Director of the Community Health Sector at the Abu Dhabi Center for Public Health, said: “This initiative is a clear indication of our leadership’s interest in protecting health, emphasizing that it is a fixed asset and giving it priority in all development issues. We, at the Abu Dhabi Center for Public Health, look forward to To promote a culture of a healthy lifestyle among members of society.

Her Excellency added: “There is no doubt that premarital examinations are imperative in the UAE, and this new initiative to expand the scope of genetic testing comes within the framework of the continuous improvement and expansion of screening programs led by the Abu Dhabi Center for Public Health, which serve the community and are provided on the basis of Voluntary, so that couples seek counseling on their own, and this program is in the interest of future generations, so that new spouses will be able to identify disease-causing genes that children may carry in the future, and this program will contribute to building a healthier and safer society, which will also contribute to reducing the burden of treatment on parents And in the health sector, we at the Abu Dhabi Center for Public Health have dedicated an annual program for premarital examinations, as expanding the scope of genetic examinations represents a distinctive addition to what we seek to achieve.”

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Dr. Noura Al-Ghaithi, Acting Executive Director of Ambulatory Health Services – SEHA, added: “The expansion of the premarital screening and counseling program will undoubtedly contribute to reducing the transmission of genetic diseases from one generation to the next and will lead to improving the health of our society. We are proud of our partnership with the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi in the application This program, through which we and all preventive programs seek, has one goal, which is to protect our society today, tomorrow, and for future generations.”

The UAE Genome Program works according to a set of ethical and administrative standards to ensure that the confidentiality of participants’ data is protected and that their privacy is preserved. This participation will contribute to enhancing the health of the participants and the health of their families, in addition to contributing to the efforts to develop the system of personal and preventive medicine in the United Arab Emirates.

People planning to get married are recommended to undergo genetic testing before consummating their marriage, to prepare an integrated and robust plan to proactively manage genetic diseases, if any. After their visit to the health center, a specialized doctor will provide an adequate and comprehensive explanation about the steps of the examinations, their objectives, capabilities, benefits and challenges surrounding them.

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