Health matters are SOME of the critical issues that each country should prioritize. Events such as disease outbreak across the globe have been an indication as to why states should have a good healthcare system that is capable of dealing with emergencies of any complexity. A good healthcare system should be capable of responding to different hazards such as infectious diseases, mass casualties of natural disasters, as well as victims of accidents. Managing such challenges can only be possible through having a well-established health security system. The UAE government considers health security as one of the critical areas that require full attention despite the fact that the health security has remained a significant issue due to specific factors in place. It is thus necessary to explore health security within the UAE through investigating various areas where the UAE government should focus to ensure the wellbeing of their citizens.
One of the issues that attract a huge attention at the moment is the outbreak of the infectious diseases in various part of the world. The outreach of a particular disease usually leads to a health crisis in the country. The health crisis is mostly witnessed when the government lacks adequate funds to manage the situation. Another aspect that can pose such challenge is the government’s inability to attract adequate qualified personnel to handle various kinds of casualties or manage diseases. It is also a great concern when it comes to the available facilities that the government have within their hospitals. All aforementioned implies that every government intending to have a secure health system must ensure that they invest in the health sectors through looking at the issues more comprehensively (Hannawin & Salmi, 2014). The UAE government is not left out in their effort to guarantee that they have a well-developed health sector. For example, during the year 2012, the authorities of the UAE reported the outbreak of MERS Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) among its citizens. The government had to take quick intervention measures to ensure that they deal with the issues effectively. The immediate action that the government undertook was highly recommended because the world is a highly interconnected place and therefore the outbreak of diseases from one end can lead to adverse effect on a large number of people in another. In the same year, other health professional bodies indicated that the total number of deaths caused by MERS-CoV across the globe was 600 people (Koornneef, Robben, & Blair, 2017). It is important to note that the government has the primary responsibility of dealing with such matters because failure to cope with health crisis does not only affect the citizens directly regarding death but it also influences the growth of the economy negatively. In such country as the UAE, for instance, it discourages tourist from visiting its resorts.
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Each year during the celebration of Hajj a lot of people visit the UAE for prayers. In fact, it is estimated that close to 8 million people come to the country yearly for this reason. On the same note, the government of UAE has indicated that they are putting more focus to expand their facilities to accommodate more people from across the world as part of their vision 2030. The huge number of people who are visiting the UAE every year implies that the number of people who will be attending various health facilities within the country has significantly increased. With that in mind, the government is engaging in coordinated health care security to make sure that the health sector can adequately manage the needs of the growing population (Hannawi & Salmi, 2014). It is essential that as the number of people increases, so should the number of health facilities that attend to various categories of citizens.
The UAE is also a major transit hub between the rest of the countries from the west and those countries from the Far East within the Asian continent. That means that the UAE does not only connect many people to the rest of the world, but it also hosts various events. For that reason, the country is seen as one of the leading destinations of religious tourism. The religious leaders have also raised concern as well as continue to come up with various coordinated efforts to ensure that the UAE upgrades their health security to accommodate the growing population that comes to the UAE each year. Notably, the ever-increasing number of visitors who come to the specific region has sent many countries to the drawing board so that they can review their health system. The UAE government believes that it is only through focusing on health security that they can stop the spread of various diseases. In fact, the World Bank also recommends various governments to improve their health system such that they can reduce casualties of disease outbreak that spread at a very high rate. For instance, such menaces as Zika virus have the potential of infecting a large number of people within a short period (Meheus & McIntyre, 2017).
The UAE government also prioritizes its agenda when it comes to improving health security for all of its citizens. Some of the reasons for doing that is because the government understands that preventing health crisis is more important since it puts the country in a position of avoiding massive damages as well as limiting the use of natural resources (Alsadan et al., 2015). The effect of such action is that it also enables the state to have a healthy economy.
Another method through which the UAE government is improving its health security is through engaging various stakeholders. The collaboration is seen an impressive growth incentive in the government effort to have protection within its health sector. The government has identified some bodies such as transportation agencies, telecommunication companies, the media as well as the army to help in improving its health security. They have invested significant funds in the media to enable them to educate the public about some fundamental health concerns. The media is also responsible for highlighting various stories that encourage the citizenry of the UAE to live a better healthy life (Sharif, 2016). The collaborative effort between the government and telecommunications has also enabled an impressive improvement in health security. Thus, health security within the state requires the efforts of many stakeholders who ensure that they complement the effort that the government is putting in place.
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The authorities of the UAE have developed comprehensive and integrated response mechanisms across the nation to help in uplifting the state of health. One of the areas that the government put a lot of focus on is coordinating their health activities with a group of professionals who are tasked with helping the people in power to make proper decisions that can be used when quick response is required in various places. Such group of people also assists in ensuring that there is no confusion within the health sector through providing much emergency training to health personnel (Alloghani, Al-Jumeily, Hussain, & Abuelma’atti, 2015). Besides, such group also supports the government activities by the timely identification of various health concerns as well as participating in numerous scientific researches. Health security also includes respect for the privacy of individuals. The UAE government adopted several policies as well as laws to protect individual privacy concerning health matters. Remarkably, they view privacy as a critical human right that they have to protect to maintain personal dignity and ascertain mutual respect between the state power and ordinary citizens.
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The UAE government has invested a lot in its resources in guaranteeing that it has a modern electronic system of keeping health records. They emphasize the fact that personal data privacy is an essential part of the new health system effectiveness. In the past, the state of the UAE witnessed a lot of damages and losses that came as a result of the poor health records management. Consequently, a lot of time was spent when dealing with the number of patients (Sharif, 2016). The modern healthcare system, however, allows the authorities within the health sector to have easier access to records of patients. The result of such development has ensured more efficiency as well as the quality of services provided.
Notably, the importance of having reliable health record management system is one of the aspects of health security and the UAE government has come up with strong laws put in place to protect personal data. The health authority within UAE requires that all stakeholders within the health care system must adhere to these policies and stick to proper procedures that help in maintaining confidentiality of health data. The private health policies are therefore an essential part of health security. In fact, the government of the UAE promotes information security of the health records. One of the ways of doing that is through ensuring that health records within the various hospitals are stored online are under top security using various technological tools (Alloghani et al., 2015). The government of UAE understands that having information security measures is essential when it comes guaranteeing the sustainability of health sector. In fact, due to growing number of hackers, it is critical that every government should institution the implementation of strict policies.
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In conclusion, health security matters are an essential issue that any government needs to focus on. The UAE government has taken a lot of measures to improve its health security to avoid health crisis that it can face it in the future. In the era of cosmopolitism and fast disease spread in the world health security remains one of the areas that the UAE government needs to put more emphasis on through engaging in collaborative efforts.