Dubai, UAE: More than 300 labourers gathered at Dubai Industrial City yesterday for a health-awareness initiative organised by the Pakistan Association Dubai.
The men received free medical check-ups that featured tests of their blood-sugar levels, cholesterol and blood pressure.
Dental and eye checks as well as hepatitis C screenings were also part of the campaign. Participants also heard about the importance of good hygiene and diet, and had the chance to have their body mass index – a measure of the amount of fat in one’s body – checked.
Staff from City Hospital, The American Hospital, Northwest Clinic Dubai and NMC Healthcare volunteered to offer the screenings to labourers.
Dr Nighat Aftab, who heads medical charitable efforts at the association, said it had been almost three years since it started organising the health campaigns.
The association also hosts monthly events at its premises in Dubai, where specialist doctors offer free check-ups and consultations to workers.
Most of the people who gathered for yesterday’s awareness campaign were found to be in good health.
“These people are really healthy and clean,” said Dr Aftab. “Few people had high blood pressure and sugar, but many had muscular problems.”
However, not all labourers that the volunteers visited were in such good health, the doctor said. High blood pressure, muscular and skin problems were common issues.
For Chandra Bahdur, who works on the packaging line of a cake-making factory, the campaign was a welcome opportunity to have a free medical.
“It is good,” said the 32-year-old from Nepal, who last saw a doctor six months ago when he was suffering from a fever.
Also in line was Mr Bahdur’s production manager, Muhammad Awais, who was there to encourage colleagues to participate.
“It is a free check-up,” he said. “It is very good to do these kinds of events in Dubai.”
Dr Omar Al Muthanna, chief executive officer of the regulatory licensing department of the Community Development Authority, also attended.
He said the Pakistan Association Dubai was one of 36 licensed non-profit organisations, registered with the authority.
“What is thrilling for us to see here is how the Pakistan Association is successful in instilling responsibility in the community to come and deliver social and healthcare activities,” he said.
“Dubai is a city willing to give, and Ramadan just exemplifies this notion.”
The association has a host of other activities in operation during the holy month, including food distribution to needy families and visits to prisons.
© The NationalJul 2014