UAE – Burjeel Holdings has joined hands with London-based St. Christopher’s Hospice to boost palliative care in the United Arab Emirates.
In a joint statement, Dr. Neil Arun Nijhawan, Consultant Hospice & Palliative Medicine, and Director of Palliative & Supportive Care at Burjeel Cancer Institute, said: “This initiative seeks to bridge the gap by connecting patients in need of palliative care with individuals who can provide meaningful assistance.”
Through a new memorandum of understanding (MOU), the UAE’s first hospice is set to be launched by Burjeel Holdings and St. Christopher’s Hospice.
This hospice will serve as a center of excellence in palliative care, providing a supportive and tranquil environment for patients and their families in the UAE.
“Our understanding underscores a pressing need within the community — there are individuals who require assistance, and others are willing to offer support but might not be sure how to do so. Our compassionate community initiative aims to leverage the social capital inherent in our community,” explained Dr. Neil.
Additionally, the scope of the partnership encompasses joint research and educational endeavors and the establishment of a palliative care research base in the UAE.
This alliance also seeks to create specialized training pathways for nurses and doctors across the UAE, ensuring that healthcare professionals are equipped with the necessary skills to provide high-quality palliative care.
As part of the collaborative efforts, Burjeel Holdings and St. Christopher’s Hospice will jointly explore further the development of palliative care services throughout the region.
Founded by Dame Cicely Saunders, St. Christopher’s Hospice is recognized as the first modern hospice and one of the global pioneers in the field of palliative and end-of-life care.
The hospice is internationally recognized for its compassionate and holistic approach to patient care, making it an ideal partner for Burjeel Holdings in this ambitious undertaking.
Consequently, Burjeel Holdings and St. Christopher’s Hospice have agreed to develop a compassionate community in the UAE, with a hospice at the focal point for the initiative.
Commenting on the significance of this partnership, Mr. John Sunil, the Chief Executive Officer of Burjeel Holdings, stated: “This collaboration signifies our commitment to enhancing palliative care services in the UAE and underscores our dedication to providing the highest quality healthcare services to our community.”
Moreover, Sheikh Ahmed bin Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation, attended the signing ceremony of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Burjeel Holdings and St. Christopher’s Hospice.
The agreement was signed by Mr. Omran Al Khoori, Member of the Board of Directors, and President of Business Development at Burjeel Holdings, and Dr. Heather Richardson, Director of Education, Research, and End-of-Life Policy at St. Christopher’s Hospice.
For her part, Dr. Heather Richardson said: “The collaboration between our two entities will shed light on the importance of compassionate end-of-life care and its positive effect on patients’ quality of life and the well-being of their loved ones.”
As specified in the new MoU, the two institutions will work closely toward a collective goal of establishing a comprehensive hospice in the UAE, specifically at Burjeel Holdings’ flagship Burjeel Medical City.
The compassionate community will focus on delivering palliative care services that address the physical, emotional, and psychological needs of patients with life-limiting illnesses.
It will offer pain management, psychological support, counseling services, and a range of complementary therapies to ensure patients receive comprehensive care tailored to their individual needs.
In addition to introducing compelling new healthcare benefits, the signing of the MoU represents a pivotal moment in the UAE’s healthcare landscape.
The new healthcare initiative is anticipated to transform how end-of-life care is delivered by offering extensive support and comfort to patients and their families across the UAE.
The primary aim of this alliance is to engage with the wider community to raise awareness of the issues faced by patients and their families dealing with a life-limiting illness.
During the signing ceremony, Sheikh Ahmed bin Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation, said: “This agreement represents an opportunity to make a positive, lasting change in the field of healthcare.”
Sheikh Ahmed gave his vote of confidence in support of this partnership while acknowledging that it will not only benefit both Burjeel Holdings and St. Christopher’s Hospice but will also contribute to serving the community.