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Gender, Globalization and Health Care in the UAE: Heart Disease and Diabetes – The silent killers?

The Dubai School of Government’s Gender and Public Policy Program cordially invites you to attend a research seminar entitled:

Gender, Globalization and Health Care in the UAE: Heart Disease and Diabetes – The silent killers?

as part of the
Gender and Public Policy Research Seminar Series

Dr. Muhammad Hamed Farooqi
Director, Dubai Diabetes Center

Dr. Obaid Mohammed Aljassim
Consultant & Head of Cardiothoracic Surgery Department, Dubai Heart Centre, Dubai Hospital

Moderator: Dr. Mohammad Al Redha
Acting Director, Health Data & Information Analysis Department, Health Policy & Strategy Sector & Non Resident Fellow, Dubai School of Government

Dubai School of Government
Convention Tower, 13th Floor

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011
6:00 pm - Reception
6:30 pm- Lecture
7:00 pm-Q&A

RSVP: Please confirm attendance at or Tel: +971-4317-55-26
Fax: +971-4-329-3291

To view live via interactive Webcast, enter the event room at:

About the Lecture
Associated with the rapid pace of globalization that characterizes the UAE in the 21st century are major lifestyle changes resulting from a huge increase in choice in all areas of life, generally increased household income, and changes in patterns of consumption – driven by global trade and marketing forces. Food and eating patterns have featured prominently in the development of such “globalized” lifestyles. The most obvious manifestations of this have been significant and rapid changes in diet, and in many places the growth of a fast food culture. This, alongside changes in people’s patterns of activities, has contributed to the growth in cases of obesity and chronic diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Globalization, through its effects on diet, has thus driven the risk of major health problems. At the same time, the globalization, privatization and marketization of health services presents other challenges to health care systems as they work to address such public health problems.
Heart disease has been identified as a major killer in the UAE. Diabetes has approached the level of an epidemic in the world in general, but in the UAE in particular – where each one of us is either a diabetic or is related to a diabetic, across all strata of society. Both have been the subject of major public health campaigns in the UAE in recent years.
Cardiovascular diseases and diabetes affect men and women differently. This is due to a complex mix of physiological and social factors that determine women’s and men’s lifestyles and therefore their level of risk. These factors also shape their knowledge of the risks associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, as well as their access to – and ability and propensity to access – preventative health care and treatment. It is therefore essential to look at public health issues such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases from a gender perspective also.
Both diabetes and cardiovascular diseases can have hugely adverse effects on both the duration and quality of life. Furthermore, their impact on the UAE’s economy is potentially serious: Not only is the cost of treating diabetes and its manifestations very high, but also – given the direct relationship between being healthy and being productive – the loss of productive time can be extremely high. Therefore, there is an immediate need to address all aspects of these major health problems in an organized and effective manner in order to limit their future impacts on society and economic productivity in the UAE. This requires efforts at the local, regional, national and global level, and the involvement of multiple stakeholders. Responsibility for leading such efforts – including developing a good understanding of the diseases, and the causes of their high prevalence in the UAE, and strengthening the relationships between the various entities implicated in addressing it – lies with the health authorities that have been entrusted with the task of addressing the diabetes “epidemic” and the increasing incidence of cardiovascular diseases.

About the Speakers
Dr. Muhammad Hamed Farooqi received his Internal Medicine training in New York and then did his Endocrine Fellowship at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. He joined the Joslin Diabetes Center Affiliate in Florida, where he was the Medical Director for nearly a decade. He is US Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Endocrinology and is a Fellow of both the American College of Endocrinology and the American College of Physicians. Dr. Farooqi’s passions also include teaching: he was a Clinical Associate Professor at the USF College of Medicine in Tampa, Florida, and has won multiple awards for teaching. He has also been recognized by both the ADA and the NCQA for the quality of care he provides. Dr. Farooqi led the team that was responsible for setting up the state-of-the-art Joslin Diabetes Center Affiliate at Dubai Health Authority. He currently serves as the Director of this Center, which has now been renamed as the Dubai Diabetes Center.

Dr. Obaid Mohammed Aljassim received his medical degree from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Gothenburg in Sweden and has a clinical PhD degree in the field of aortic valve surgery. He is member of the European Association of Cardiothoracic Surgery, the Gothenburg Medical Association, the Emirates Medical Association & Emirates Cardiac Society, the Royal College of Surgeons in England and the European Association of Cardiothoracic Surgery. He is also an honorary member of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden. In 2005 he was awarded the Distinguished Government Employee award at DOHMS (Department of Health and Medical Services). From 2007 to 2010 he was Vice President of Emirates Cardiac Society. He is a research leader in the cardiothoracic surgery field and has published extensively in scientific and medical journals. He is currently Consultant & Head of the Cardiothoracic Surgery Department at Dubai Hospital.

About the Gender and Public Policy Research Seminar Series
The Dubai School of Government hosts a research seminar series focusing on a variety of gender and public policy issues. This series brings prominent researchers, scholars, and practitioners alike to the discussion table to share their research findings and views on opportunities and challenges facing women’s leadership in the Arab world. The seminar series provides a platform for the presentation and discussion of policy-oriented research and fosters an intellectually critical environment where researchers can receive feedback on their projects. The series began in 2007 and to date has hosted over 25 seminars covering a variety of issues including (but not limited to) women’s political, economic and social participation, as well as, women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship and leadership. The seminar series also explored women’s formal and informal involvement in the labor market, social exclusion of women, women and the law, gender equality, education, family, migration, negotiation and conflict resolution. The series has hosted renowned local, regional and international speakers such as: her Excellency Amat Al Alim Alsoswa, Assistant Secretary General Regional Bureau of UNDP; Dr. Suad Joseph, University of California, Davis; Dr. Maryam Lootah, Assistant Professor of Political Science; Professor, Hatoon Al Fassi, King Saud University, Saudi Arabia; Dr. Amira Sonbol, Georgetown University Qatar, Dr. Rohini Pande and Reema Hana, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; Sylvia Ann Hewlett, Founder and President of the Center for Work-Life Policy; Dr. Mona Al Bahr, Senior Executive Manager for Social Programmes, The Emirates Foundation.

About the Gender and Public Policy Program
The Dubai School of Government’s Gender and Public Policy Program aims to support theoretically and methodologically rigorous research that conceptualizes and analyzes gender gaps in the Arab world, while linking the research to agendas and instruments for informed policy action. Today, it has become a nexus through which research projects, conferences, training and workshops, policy debates and academic programs on gender concerns are engaged. The program contributes to the academic scholarship on gender and public policy in the Arab world while simultaneously incorporating gender perspectives on public policy into the education of future and current leaders taught and trained at the Dubai School of Government and beyond. The program forges partnerships with academic institutions, private sector organizations, government agencies, and policy makers to act as a platform for influencing public policies affecting the lives of women and men in the Arab world.

About the Dubai School of Government
The Dubai School of Government is a research and teaching institution focusing on public policy in the Arab world. Established in 2005 under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, in cooperation with the Harvard Kennedy School, DSG aims to promote good governance through enhancing the region’s capacity for effective public policy. Toward this goal, the Dubai School of Government also collaborates with regional and global institutions in delivering its research and training programs. In addition, the School organizes policy forums and international conferences to facilitate the exchange of ideas and promote critical debate on public policy in the Arab world.

Gender Public Policy Program
Dubai School of Government

Level 13, Convention Tower
P.O. Box 72229, Dubai, UAE
Phone: +9714-3293526
Fax: +9714-3293291

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