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UAE – Health Centers and Clinics Sector at the Ministry of Health and Prevention has launched at its Dubai office an awareness campaign on seasonal flu for its healthcare workers. Public health specialists from the Preventive Medicine Department were present during the campaign launching, a move that seeks to raise the competencies of all healthcare workers in dealing with influenza virus infection and related risks. Part of the campaign is to give updated knowledge and training sessions relating to advanced modern methods designed to prevent the spread of the virus. Flu awareness activities will be held in various preventive medicine centers at medical districts until December 22, 2016.

Dr. Hussein Abdel-Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary of Health Centers and Clinics Sector at the Ministry Health & Prevention, said the awareness campaign aims to protect healthcare workers from seasonal flu in line with the national initiatives to control acute respiratory infectious diseases and promote health of entire community. This development is a major step towards the Ministry?s goal to build a world-class local health system to shield UAE society from all communicable diseases, control and monitor these illnesses, and regularly improve the competencies of the country?s healthcare professionals especially with regard to the use of the latest scientific methods.

Dr. Al Rand assured that the Ministry will continue to hold awareness campaigns to control and prevent transmission of infectious diseases, as knowing the nature of a disease, its causes, symptoms, and preventive methods are a fundamental pillars for stopping its transmission. He also cited various key measures to raise public awareness of seasonal flu, including training courses targeting healthcare workers as well as distribution of brochures, leaflets and posters. The training courses will provide healthcare professionals with necessary information about the burden, its symptoms, route of transmission, treatment, reporting and prevention, and the best means to give health education to patients.

Dr. Nada Marzouqi, Director of Preventive Medicine Department, explained that flu varies from season to season and that the seriousness of its effects is difficult to predict. So, the influenza vaccine is most effective when the vaccine provided closely matches the circulating viruses each year.

During the launching, a workshop aimed to educate healthcare workers was conducted. As they are at higher risk of getting the virus given the nature of their work and regular contact with patients, the participants were also given flu vaccination to protect themselves and their families as well as their patients.

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