The prompt and effective actions taken by the UAE to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country has been outlined in a detailed report released by the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Government (MBRSG) in collaboration with the Knowledge to Policy (K2P) Center Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) at the American University of Beirut under the Building Institutional Capacity for Health Policy and Systems Research and Delivery Science mentorship project with the Alliance- WHO.
Titled: Informing United Arab Emirates’ Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the 53-page report from MBRSG - the first research and teaching institution focused on promoting governance and public policy in the Arab world - highlights the virus’s arrival into the country, chronicling its rate of transmission and cataloguing the various measures taken by the authorities to prevent further infections.
Reviewing the pandemic’s impact on the UAE and the various authorities’ extensive efforts to counter it, the MBRSG report includes a comprehensive timeline of the outbreak in the country, its aim being to present concise information about the coronavirus in a single document that can assist relevant bodies in their ongoing efforts to combat it.
“Informing United Arab Emirates’ Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic forms part of the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Government’s mission - both in the short- and a long term - to support UAE efforts to overcome the coronavirus outbreak. MBSRG has on its staff cadres of professionals with extensive experience and expertise who can provide the government and public sector with the right solutions needed to overcome this situation,” said His Excellency Dr. Ali bin Sebaa Al-Marri, Executive President of MBRSG.
“The research we conducted to formulate this report has given us a wealth of ideas on the best practices that the government and health sectors should consider implementing now and in the future in order to consign this pandemic to history. Along with all government departments and affiliated bodies, MBRSG is striving tirelessly to enhance the UAE’s readiness to face any similar future emergencies,” he added.
Key elements of the MBRSG report are that on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the COVID-19 outbreak to be a pandemic, raising the status and threat level of the disease and putting the global community on notice that its continued spread around the world to all countries was likely.
Focusing on the UAE, the document highlights that the first case of the virus was confirmed on January 29 2020. It reports that since then, the number of cases has grown exponentially, with 11,929 cases of coronavirus confirmed by the end of April and deaths from the disease numbering 98. It revealed that the UAE has conducted over 1,122,000 COVID-19 tests among UAE citizens and residents over the past two months, in line with the Ministry of Health and Prevention's plans to intensify virus screening in order to contain the spread of the virus.
MBRSG’s report draws attention to key UAE policies, laws, regulations and decrees that have been announced for immediate implementation to limit further transmission of the coronavirus, reassure the public, and ensure that the needs of the community continue to be met, especially in relation to food, nutrition and well-being.
Informing United Arab Emirates’ Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic reiterates that the UAE is amongst the world’s top 10 countries for COVID-19 treatment efficiency and in the global top 20 for implementation of COVID-19 safety measures. It concludes by saying that while continuously evaluating and improving its capacity at different levels, the UAE should be able to not only respond actively and effectively to domestic crises, but also strengthen its capacity to help other countries in global health emergencies.