ABU DHABI: A new campaign from the Abu Dhabi Department of Health aims to raise awareness of the need for life-saving organ donations and encourage more people to register as donors.
The Abu Dhabi Community Campaign, which is part of Hayat, the UAE’s National Program for Organ Donation and Transplantation, aims to help improve the prospects for patients suffering from organ failure by increasing the amount of donated organs and tissue available for transplant.
Abdulla Al-Hamed, the chairman of the DofH, led by example by becoming the first person during the new campaign to register as a donor, and he encouraged others to follow suit.
It was launched on the sidelines of the International Conference for Initiatives on Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation, which began in Abu Dhabi on Nov. 7 and continues until Nov. 9.
At the launch event, Al-Hamed paid tribute to a number of organ recipients, the families of donors and campaigners in the field of organ donation, who he said exemplify a model of unity and altruism.
He also officially opened an exhibition featuring more than 70 works of art and literature that trace the history of organ donation. It includes drawings and stories created by children who received transplants, along with works by professionals and community members, some of which have won international awards.
“In honor of the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan, and in the footsteps of the nation’s leader, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, we continue to consolidate Abu Dhabi’s global position as a leading destination for healthcare,” Al-Hamed said.
“We have learned from the magnanimity of our wise leadership the highest meaning of giving, of tolerance, of brotherhood and how to extend a helping hand to those in need. These are well-established societal values that are embodied in organ donation, a noble humanitarian act that gives others renewed hope in life.
“These values create a vivid scenario of community solidarity, where organ donation, whether during life or after death, saves many patients, affording them a full recovery. I invite everyone to contribute to instilling hope in the lives of many around us by registering for the Hayat program.”
In partnership with a number of local and global strategic partners, the program highlights the importance of the donation and transplantation of organs and tissue in line with the highest international standards and practices.
It also aims to raise awareness about the benefits of adopting a healthy lifestyle and avoiding factors that can contribute to the risk of developing lifestyle-related diseases and organ failure that might require a transplant. It advocates for the prevention of chronic diseases through regular physical activity and the adoption of a healthy diet.
“Organ donation is a noble act, both in life and after death,” said Jamal Mohammed Al-Kaabi, undersecretary at the DoH. “One person has the potential to save the lives of eight individuals who are in desperate need of organ donation.
“Donating an organ is really a gift of life to many patients, including those suffering from cancer, heart disease, lung failure, cirrhosis, kidney failure and more.”
He urged members of the public to find out more about the program and how they can contribute to improving the lives of those most in need, and said: “Together we can create hope and give the gift of life to many patients.”