April 18, 2024

Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Center partners with Red Crescent to enhance bone marrow transplant accessibility for patients

Abu Dhabi, 18 April 2024: Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Center (ADSCC) has partnered with Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) to enhance accessibility to bone marrow transplants for patients in need, providing them with treatment and support via the centre’s dedicated Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant (ADBMT©) Program.

Under the partnership, ADSCC will provide medical consultations to patients referred by the medical committee of ERC. In addition, both entities will join efforts in fundraising initiatives aimed at supporting and financing BMT procedures for underprivileged patients.

The partnership aims to provide these critical treatments to individuals affected by various blood cancers, blood disorders, and autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis, ensuring they receive the highest standard of care and support throughout their treatment process by Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant program (ADBMT©) at ADSCC, which is accredited as a Center of Excellence in Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation by the Department of Health Abu Dhabi.

The agreement was signed by His Excellency Mohammed Al Fahim, Deputy Secretary General of Support Services Sector at ERC and Dr Maysoon Al Karam, Chief Medical Officer of ADSCC.

His Excellency Mohammed Al Fahim said: “The agreement with Abu Dhabi Stem Cells Center embodies the vision of the UAE Red Crescent of enhancing humanitarian partnerships with various local sectors, particularly the healthcare sector, which is currently a priority in the authority's local and international efforts. It reflects the shared goal between both parties of alleviating the suffering of patients, supporting their health needs, and strengthening cooperation to achieve better health outcomes for the Red Crescent's beneficiaries. I would like to express our appreciation for such initiatives that address the health needs of vulnerable groups and commend Abu Dhabi Stem Cell Center's (ADSCC) efforts, and their contributions to advancing treatment and healing. The alignment of visions between the UAE Red Crescent and ADSCC, highlights the importance and potential for strategic partnerships in healthcare.”

Dr Maysoon Al Karam said: "The UAE’s leadership has always placed the health and wellbeing of its people at the forefront of its priorities, ensuring that high-quality healthcare services are accessible to all. This commitment underscores the essence of our collaboration with the Emirates Red Crescent, reflecting our joint vision to expand the accessibility of advanced medical treatments. Through such collaborations, we aim to bridge the gap in healthcare access, ensuring that state-of-the-art treatments are accessible to those in need. As a Center of Excellence in Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation, our Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant Program has been offering holistic care for autologous and allogenic bone marrow transplant for adults and children since 2020. By providing advanced treatments locally, we eliminate the need for patients to seek medical care abroad. This not only enhances convenience for patients and their families but also plays a vital role in reducing the nation's healthcare expenditures.

“To ensure healthcare access in the UAE, ADSCC is dedicated to collaborating with key stakeholders across the nation. This commitment is geared towards achieving our vision of pioneering innovative solutions to discover cures for diseases,” concluded Dr Al Karam.

ADSCC has been leading advancements in cellular therapy, particularly in bone marrow transplantation. In 2020, ADSCC launched its Abu Dhabi Bone Marrow Transplant Program, the first comprehensive program in the UAE to provide autologous and allogeneic hematopoietic stem cells transplants (HSCT) for adult and pediatric patients. Since its inception, ADSCC has achieved noteworthy milestones in BMT. Notably, in 2022, the center conducted the first BMT for a patient with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the Middle East. This was followed by another pioneering procedure in 2023, where ADSCC performed the first BMT for a newborn diagnosed with Krabbe disease, a rare genetic disorder. Furthermore, ADSCC has successfully used BMT to treat thalassemia. ADSCC has also manufactured the UAE’s first CAR-T cells to treat an 11-year-old boy with leukemia. Engineered CAR-T cells therapies are recognized as a medical breakthrough in blood cancer treatment.