A team of researchers from Abu Dhabi Centre for Public Health and the Institute of Public Health of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences at the UAE University have examined the outcomes of the "Covid-19 Mass Testing Programme", which has been implemented in the UAE to controlling infections and reducing the death toll.
The study aimed to evaluate the nationwide testing programme and its impact on reducing the spread of the pandemic.
Dr. Farida Al Hosani, Executive Director of the Communicable Diseases Department at the Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre (ADPHC), and Official Spokesperson of the UAE Health Sector, commented, "The adoption of mass testing technologies helped the country rapidly upgrade its testing capabilities and diagnostic methods. Some of the key success drivers of the UAE’s response to the pandemic include improving monitoring and early detection by expanding the number of surveillance team field medical teams, investing in laboratory capabilities to accelerate testing by adopting high quality labs and establishing drive-through centres across the country, the unified study with UAEU proofed this success."
According to Dr. Eric Koornneeff from the UAE University, who led the research, "the study sought to share the UAE's experience with the whole world to benefit from it".
Dr. Marilia Silva Paulo, from the UAE University, added that "the open testing strategy impacted both the population health and the health systems capacity".
The study is a part of many other researches carried out by Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre under the umbrella of the "COVID-19 Research Committee", headed by Dr. Farida Al Hosani.
The committee, which was formed upon the direction of the chairman of the Health Department at the beginning of this year, is a manifestation of the vision of the UAE's wise leadership that scientific research allows countries to deal with the pandemic in an effective way.
The study concluded that despite the difficulty of analysing the impact of all the measures which were set by the World Health Organisation for governments to reduce the impact of epidemics and pandemics; the implementation of the policy of mass testing, which was conducted by the UAE, was useful in containing the virus and reducing the death toll. This is the procedure that could not be applied by most of the countries due to the increased burden on their health systems. However, the UAE provided residents with access to high quality and affordable health services and tests.