NRL is the exclusive laboratory services provider to MOHAP for the breast and cervical cancer screening program.
NRL supports Ministry's awareness campaign for the enhancement of women's health and improvement of early cancer detection rates.
Abu Dhabi, UAE, 30 April 2017: National Reference Laboratory (NRL), part of Mubadala's network of healthcare providers, has expanded its partnership with the Ministry of Health & Prevention's (MOHAP) to include laboratory testing for its breast cancer screening program, in addition to cervical cancer screening. Under the program named ‘Etmnan' – which the Ministry officially launched in September 2015 – free breast cancer screening is offered to UAE Nationals aged 40 years old and over, and cervical cancer screening to women between 25-65.
Exclusively providing testing services for the Ministry's cervical cancer screening program since the launch of the program in 2015, NRL has up to date completed testing for more than 2,000 women under the care of the MOHAP.
His Excellency Dr Hussein Abdul Rahman Al Rand, UAE Assistant Undersecretary for Health Centers and Clinics, added: “We appreciate and value the efforts of National Reference Laboratory for ensuring that high-quality laboratory testing is readily available, and particularly for the support in awareness campaign efforts, for both breast and cervical cancer screening.”
“NRL is proud to extend its services to the Ministry of Health & Prevention as its exclusive laboratory partner for the breast cancer screening program, an important initiative in raising awareness of disease prevention through regular check-ups. Owing to our state-of-the-art logistics and connectivity solutions, NRL ensures coverage of all seven Emirates, and with that provides sample pick up and laboratory services to all 66 primary health care centers within the MOHAP network, in Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah, RAK and UAQ,” said Abdul Hamid Oubeisi, CEO of NRL.
NRL further supports the programs by including NRL's Chief Medical Officer – Dr. Basel Altrabulsi, as part of the team that educates and trains MOHAP's general practitioners and gynecologists on different aspects of cervical cancer testing. Moreover, NRL facilitates the awareness campaigns of the Ministry through the delivery of a targeted SMS campaigns to reach the desired demographic.
Suhail Mahmood Al Ansari, Executive Director of Mubadala Healthcare and Chairman of NRL commented: “We are glad that NRL with its resources and quality of services is in a position to support this noble initiative of the MOHAP, contributing towards the improvement of medical care and the overall health of the UAE's population. It is another testament of the importance of having locally available high-quality services that positively affect the general health and wellbeing of the population on such scale.”
As part of the UAE government accelerators program aimed at reducing deaths caused by breast cancer per 100,000 population, a 100-day initiative was launched in January 2017. The initiative was developed by a team of local and federal government health authorities and private companies in coordination with the Cabinet Office with the aim to provide screening for breast cancer to at least 2,000 women in the emirate of Fujairah, which was successfully completed in early April.
Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths for women in the UAE and the most common form of cancer affecting women all over the world. According to the World Health Organization, over 500 women in the UAE are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. According to the cancer screening guidelines of the Healthcare Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD), all women over the age of 40 should get a mammogram every two years.
Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer affecting females globally, affecting nearly 100 new women in the UAE annually. According to the guidelines, women aged 25-65 should get a PAP test every 3-5 years.