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Department of Health to set up booth to promote health and wellness for People of Determination at Special Olympics

11 Mar, 2019: Department of Health—Abu Dhabi (DoH) is setting up a booth at the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 to promote the health and wellness of athletes. The booth will encompass 13 stands within, and will host a number of preventative medical check-ups and educational activities. The stands will also include a variety of interactive learning tools and display screens as well as leaflets that will be distributed to visitors. These aim to educate athletes and the delegation accompanying them on important health and personal hygiene practices.

The DoH team will play an active role in conducting assessments with athletes on a one-on-one basis to evaluate their health practices and carry out preventive tests to measure their body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, bone density test and carbon monoxide (CO) levels. The stand will also offer health tips including healthy nutrition, nicotine effects, body hydration, sun protection, personal hygiene and physical exercise.

The booth was designed to bring a fun, educational and engaging experience to athletes and visitors at the event to raise their awareness on healthy lifestyle habits and practices that will improve their overall wellness.

Dr. Omniyat Al Hajri, Director of Public Health Division at Department of Health Abu Dhabi commented: “DoH strives to actively contribute through the Health Promotion booth in promoting the healthy athletes programme to athletes and visitors at the stand as well as encourage them to adopt healthier and preventive lifestyles that will boost their overall wellness. DoH continues to ensure the needs of People of Determination remain its utmost priority by carrying out preventative screenings to detect any health diseases and identify practical steps to help them prevent and overcome them.”

DoH will be setting up and organising the health promotion stand and will be responsible for communicating health messages to visitors at the stand, carrying out preventive tests and evaluating the results to boost an understanding of common health issues between athletes and the delegations accompanying them.

Al Hajri added, “As part of our preparations, DoH ensured the design and structure caters to all visitors for the purposes of safety, ease and convenience of the athletes visiting the stand. DoH also provided training to six coaches, who are training the athletes, to bring their expertise and knowledge to the stand with the visitors. We have successfully trained more than 150 medical volunteer, and we are set to train additional 50 volunteer on-ground during the event.”

A medical committee was formed, spearheaded by DoH, to ensure the provision of all medical support needed for the event. The committee is responsible for planning and coordinating to ensure medical support is available to athletes and the delegations from the moment they arrive up until they safely travel home. The committee includes Ministry of Health and Prevention, Dubai Health Authority, Abu Dhabi Police, Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA), Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA), Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services and Mubadala Healthcare.

Taking place from 14-21 March, the event is set to be the largest sports and humanitarian event in the world, with 7,000 athletes and 3,000 coaches representing more than 190 countries. The event will be largest single event ever held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the first Special Olympics World Games in the Middle East. The World Games will feature 24 officially sanctioned Olympic-style sports in seven sports venues across Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

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