By Andy Sambidge
Health authority tests thousands of workers as part of residency applications.
Four specially designated primary care centres in Abu Dhabi have carried out 13,000 medical screens for visa applications in just eight days, the health authority said on Monday.The data is the first to come out of a new system for medical fitness tests introduced at the beginning of the year.
Since Jan. 2 the screening tests have been limited to just four Disease Prevention and Screening Centres, which were appointed by the health authority last year.
The centres extended their operating hours from 7am to 7pm daily, and have been working through Friday and Saturday, to meet demand.
“The influx of expatriates has been immense at all four facilities and we have successfully conducted the screening processes and issued certificates to 13,000 applicants, within the stipulated 24 hours of the examination,” said Dr. Zainab Khazal, a health authority official who is managing the centres.
“It has been challenging as we were faced with a slight overflow and needed to process a ten-day volume within eight days,” she added.
“The number of applicants will only grow further, and we are in the process of constant enhancement."
Mobile clinics would be introduced in the middle of 2009 to supplement the work of the centres, Dr Khazal said.
The screening process includes a physical examination, blood tests, X-rays and vaccinations.
Kuwait couldn't do 13 people in 4 days.
It's not all doom and gloom!