COVID-19

GulfNews UAE

Over 13,000 girls vaccinated against HPV in the UAE

Health|: Abu Dhabi: A total of 13,874 girls and women across the UAE have been vaccinated against the human papillomavirus in 2019-2020, the Friends of Cancer Patients (FOCP) announced in Sharjah today. This helped provide an extensive 84 per cent coverage, Sawsan Jafar, chairperson of the FOCP board of director, said during Second Cervical Cancer Forum, which kicked off virtually today. Addressing attendees from 11 countries, Abdulrahman Al Oweis, UAE Minister of Health and Prevention, said the country takes targeted actions to curb cancer. “The UAE has in place national preventive strategies and health and awareness programmes to curb cancer, and promote a healthy lifestyle to all members of the community, in addition to early detection of cancers including cervical cancer to achieve the UAE Vision 2021,” Al Oweis said. “Raising awareness about the importance of early screening for cervical cancer, and its vital role in minimising the death rate between females in the UAE is very important and we are focused on it,” he said. Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharja and founder and patron of Friends Of Cancer Patients (FOCP), said society must act together to raise awareness about cervical cancer, which kills about 7,500 women and girls in the Middle East and North Africa region every year. The two-day international forum focussed on accelerating action against HPV and cervical cancer, and is seeing the participation of 35 experts. “The healthcare industry has been facing a challenging situation since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has affected patients severely. However, international efforts to combat the situation have risen to the occasion, along with a boost in awareness campaigns. FOCP continues to mobilise efforts, locally as well as globally, to develop sustainable programmes aimed at eliminating cancer,” Sheikha Jawaher said.

GulfNews UAE

IHG signs MDA with Ishraq Hospitality to open 8 new Holiday Inn Express hotels across MEA

UAE|: IHG Hotels & Resorts, one of the world’s leading hotel companies, has recently signed a Master Development Agreement (MDA) with Ishraq Hospitality, a division of the Dubai-based Mohamed & Obaid Almulla Group, to develop eight hotels across IHG’s midscale brand, Holiday Inn Express, in the MEA region. The multi-property portfolio license will see new hotel openings in the United Arab Emirates, Sultanate of Oman, Bahrain, Jordan and Egypt in the near term. Ishraq Hospitality, which operates HIEX under the IHG® franchise, currently owns four Holiday Inn Express hotels in the UAE in partnership with IHG®. Holiday Inn Express is one of IHG’s fastest-growing hotel brands - a first choice for the increasing number of travelers who need a simple, engaging place to rest, recharge and get a little work done. The agreement will mark the first Holiday Inn Express hotels in Oman, Bahrain, Jordan and Egypt where there is an expected build-up of demand for midscale, branded accommodation to cater to business and leisure tourists alike. The brand debuts will strengthen IHG’s existing Holiday Inn brand family portfolio and solidify IHG’s position as one of the leading hospitality players across the region. Ishraq Hospitality has an excellent track record in hospitality management and the agreement will see it expand its horizons to create a regional footprint. Speaking on the announcement, Pascal Gauvin, Managing Director, India, Middle East and Africa, IHG said: “We are delighted to sign this agreement with Ishraq Hospitality, which will bring the Holiday Inn Express brand to the forefront in the Middle East and further strengthen our midscale offering in the MEA region. We are proud to continue our relationship with Ishraq Hospitality with whom we share a common vision for the travel and tourism industry in the region. The hospitality sector has faced great challenges in response to COVID-19, however, such signings reaffirm a positive future outlook for the industry. We are excited about this new venture and look forward to welcoming guests to these highly anticipated locations in the near future.” Sherif Beshara, Group CEO of Mohamed & Obaid Almulla Group, the holding company of Ishraq Hospitality, said, “We are proud to further strengthen our partnership with IHG®, given our already strong, successful relationship with them. This agreement solidifies and endorses Ishraq Hospitality as a renowned hospitality management company under the IHG® franchise. This signing presents us with more opportunities to reinforce and build on our Holiday Inn Express portfolio in MEA. “There is ample evidence of the strength of the region’s economy and the robust potential of its hospitality sector, and we are committed to accelerating this growth, along with IHG®, our trusted partner. “Given IHG®’s global expertise in hospitality, their signature flair and strong legacy in the region, I am confident that the opening of the hotels in enviably strategic locations will successfully cater to all the needs of modern business and leisure travelers.”