COVID-19

GulfNews World

A year on, doctor recalls first reported US COVID-19 death

Americas|: Kirkland: This time last year, infectious disease physician Francis Riedo was having what he'd consider a fairly typical Friday - and didn't suspect his hospital would soon report the United States' first death from COVID-19. It was the middle of flu season, and several patients were being treated in the intensive care unit of EvergreenHealth Medical Center Kirkland, a suburb of Seattle. Two of them were on ventilators, critically ill with lower respiratory infections, but "there was no clear diagnosis," Riedo recalled. EvergreenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland, Washington Image Credit: AFP A handful of COVID-19 cases had so far been detected in the country, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had just changed its guidance to recommend testing people with suspicious symptoms, even if they hadn't traveled to Wuhan. That evening, "we filled out the three pages of paperwork for each, and the following morning, on Friday morning, collected the swabs of these two individuals and sent them off to the state lab testing." It happened to be the first day that state labs were trusted with testing samples - prior to that, the specimens were all sent to the CDC's headquarters in Atlanta. Riedo wanted to make sure the swabs were correctly collected, and hand them over himself. He'd certainly been keeping up with the mysterious new disease that had been ravaging China but wasn't really worried. Read more 100 days of coronavirus that changed the world COVID-19: How the coronavirus changed the world and our lives "I dropped those specimens off and went about my day," said Riedo. "I honestly did not think that this was going to be more than an exercise." He then went to see one of the two critically ill patients - whom he had happened to have treated five years earlier, too. "By the time I got there in the afternoon, he had already passed away," he said. The man had been in his fifties and in poor health. His family had come to see him, and it wasn't known at that point that he had had COVID-19. This is it, this is really where it begins. Dr. Frank Riedo | Medical director of infection control at EvergreenHealth Hospital Riedo didn't expect the test results to come back for several more days, but that evening, he received a call from the county health authorities, informing him both samples had returned positive. "My initial response, I have to say, was a bit of skepticism," he said, recalling widespread reporting at the time of defective tests. The officials, however, were adamant. "After that moment of skepticism or incredulity, I said, 'This is it, this is really where it begins.'" 'Great deal of unknowns' The revelation unleashed a rapid chain of events. Riedo spoke with the family of the deceased and had to respond to inquiries from the county authorities, as well as talk to the nurses about remembering masking practices. The names of everyone who was exposed were also collected, so that they could be tested as well. "This immediately launched a huge investigation," said the doctor. Since the two individuals had no known connection to each other, doctors quickly realized the disease was already spreading in the community. The announcement was made public the next day, February 29. And the cases continued racking up. "These two individuals turned into 31 within five days, and hundreds within weeks," continued Riedo. Officials later confirmed that others had in fact succumbed to the disease as early as mid-February, in California. Looking back, Riedo recalls "there were a great deal of unknowns" at the time. "I don't think we ever imagined that it would be a magnitude that we've experienced," he said. But within weeks, "ambulances were literally lining up outside the emergency department to drop off patients." The United States has been hit hardest by the pandemic, and earlier this week crossed the latest grim milestone of 500,000 deaths. Even with the early mayhem, "I don't think anybody could have expected half a million," Riedo concluded.

GulfNews World

WHO experts warn health risk of 'post-COVID’ symptoms

World|: Copenhagen: As COVID-19 transmission rates seemingly decline across the European Region, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge expressed health concerns over "long- COVID" or "post- COVID" symptoms at a virtual press conference on Thursday. "The disability following SARS-CoV-2 infection lingers on for months with severe social, economic, health and occupational consequences," said Kluge, who identified the issue as "a clear priority for WHO, and of the utmost importance." According to Kluge, a total of 38 million infection cases had been registered in the European Region since the pandemic began, and "one in ten COVID-19 sufferers remain unwell after 12 weeks, and many for much longer", the Xinhua news agency reported. "Yet stories of those who should have 'recovered', but whose lives were still affected by debilitating symptoms soon emerged. Regrettably, some were met with disbelief or lack of understanding," said Kluge. Professor Martin McKee, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, also speaking at the press conference, provided further insight into "post- COVID" symptoms. Spectrum of symptoms McKee described them as "a varying combination of overlapping symptoms, including chest and muscle pain, fatigue, shortness of breath, and what patients describe as brain fog." "Although many viral infections are self-limiting, making people feel unwell for only a few days before clearing up, others cause long-term problems. Early on, we realised that this new coronavirus was not just causing pneumonia. In some patients it was attacking many different body systems, such as the heart and blood vessels, the brain, and the kidneys," said McKee. In response to the prevalence of the lingering after-effects of COVID-19, Kluge acknowledged that the WHO had earlier in the month "hosted a consultation on post- COVID-19 conditions, focusing on recognition, research and rehabilitation." Conference call In addition, Kluge also confirmed that WHO Europe would soon be convening a conference with the chief medical officers of all 53 countries in the European Region to set out a regional strategy to tackle the issue. "As we learn more, we need to make sure patients who have had suspected or confirmed COVID-19, who have persistent -- new or changing symptoms -- should have access to follow-up care. This is where primary health-care has a particularly strong role to play," said Kluge. The regional director further emphasised the need for the region's medical authorities to seriously "listen and understand" the sufferers of post- COVID conditions, if they intended to tackle it successfully. "I am calling upon you, countries and institutions in the European Region, to come together as part of an integrated research agenda, using harmonised data collection tools and study protocols. This will be key to maximise the impact of treatment and improve long-term outcomes for patients," said Kluge.

GulfNews TOP

UAE's private jet travel is readying for an 'Uber for the skies' experience

Aviation|: Dubai: You’ve done it – take out the phone, open an app and make a booking for a ride to come and drop to your choice of location. It could be a ride to the home, office, a meeting… or even down to the airport. Now, a company wants to take the same concept of ride-hailing beyond the airport and up to the skies. That’s right, create an “Uber for the skies…,” is how Ravi Thakran, the Singapore-based Chairman and Managing Partner of GCC Asia Growth Fund. Let’s be clear – Thakran is not engaging in wishful thinking. One of his entities – Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp. – earlier this month acquired US-based Wheels Up Partners Holdings, whose business model is based on offering seats on any available private jet that’s there in their neighbourhood. The intention – make private jet travel available to more than just the super-rich or corporate clients. And the rates? In the range of “Business Class plus…”Ravi Thakran, who has had stints with LVMH, Swatch and Nike, has set sights on bringing in a few changes to the business of private jets. His plan? Expand the user base.Irish Eden R. Belleza/Gulf News Wheels Up's way Headquartered in the US, the Wheels Up concept works on connecting prospective fliers with private jet owners or operators. The model works on expanding the base of users of private jets beyond the xtremely wealthy, the celebrities and top corporate executives. Wheels Up services include membership programmes, on-demand private flights across all cabin categories, aircraft management, and aircraft sales. It manages the private jet fleet of Delta Air Lines. In 2020, the company flew more than 150,000 passengers, utilizing its access to over 1,500 owned, managed, and third-party partner aircraft. With its plans to head to the Middle East and Far East hubs, Wheels Up wants to further its fleet of ready-to-fly jets. Heading to the Middle East The deal, which values Wheels Up at $2.1 billion and get a listing on NYSE, will see the company expand its reach beyond the US into the Middle East and Asia. But will this concept fly in untested markets? “During the pandemic, while there were headwinds for the airline industry as such, it actually created a tailwind for private jet aviation,” said Thakran, who in another avatar was the head of Asia operations at the French luxury goods giant LVMH, which is the home of Louis Vuitton, Givenchy and Christian Dior. “In the Middle East itself, private jet flying during 2020 was up 20 per cent plus, while in the US, it was up by 36 per cent. And in many other parts of the world, there was similar double-digit growth. “There are between 850 to 1,500 private jet aircrafts in the MEA region, but which spend 90-95 per cent of the time on the ground. A 95 per cent utilisation rate is way too low. “With Wheels Up, we are bringing a new-generation tech platform that will be able to connect aspirational consumers on one side and tens of thousands of private aircraft on the other.” That’s where the Uber concept comes in. $ 2.1 Billion What Wheels Up is valued at after the latest deal Take up rates soar Thakran’s views about COVID-19 and private jet demand are on the ball. Demand shot up immediately after several countries imposed lockdown measures and those who could afford it chose to fly private to get back to wherever they wanted. Corporates flew in or out their key executives as and when they needed, and ensure business continuity. (In the UAE, there were a handful of business houses that chartered private jets to help those who were stranded here a chance to return.) Now that more fliers have had a taste for private jets, Thakran reckons it will become habit forming. “It was a first-time experience for many - they are not going to go back to commercial flights,” he added. “There’s a McKinsey study that says 90 per cent of those who can afford to fly in private jets have not done so because they feel it’s too costly. Or have concerns about how to go about it.” This is where the Wheels Up app and systems kick into gear. Tap a few times on the app and the prospective flier gets to have a selection rates and jets to make the ride happen. Much like an Uber… “When you create a subscription model like Wheels Up, it creates a much faster adoption rate,” said Thakran. “You have the dynamic pricing, which we think it will generate higher adoption rates. The whole process becomes as easy as buying a ticket for the NBA or NFL.” Partner search Outside of the US, Thakran reckons Wheels Up’s best prospects would lie in the UAE and Middle East, as well as in the Far East. The plan is to rope in a partner, preferably one from the UAE. “In the Middle East, the UAE is the best place to exploit this concept,” he said. “With the new aerospace hub that the UAE is building and the investments that have gone in, I don’t think there’s another region in Asia Pacific that’s putting as much focus into aviation. “A partnership with a player in the UAE and create a central hub for the region will be a fantastic. There is Saudi Arabia is upping investments in this field - but UAE has the advantages. We will be encouraging Wheels Up to consider an alliance, do a collaboration.” Change mindset But to get traction, Thakran and Wheels Up will need to work on mindsets as well. The majority of the private jets in the Middle East are owned by high networth individuals or corporates. “The Middle East has always believed in a full ownership model,” said Thakran. “But if a number of owners of these 850 jets can be convinced to place their aircraft on the Wheels Up platform, their utilisation rates will shoot up. “If 5 per cent is the actual utilisation rate in the US, it’s even less for private jets in the UAE and Middle East. We could change that. There are way to monetize that time, and it will be great for everyone - provided that jet owners are open to leasing their aircraft.” That’s what Wheels Up and Thakran will hope to find out… soon.

GulfNews Business

UAE's private jet travel is readying for an 'Uber for the skies' experience

Aviation|: Dubai: You’ve done it – take out the phone, open an app and make a booking for a ride to come and drop to your choice of location. It could be a ride to the home, office, a meeting… or even down to the airport. Now, a company wants to take the same concept of ride-hailing beyond the airport and up to the skies. That’s right, create an “Uber for the skies…,” is how Ravi Thakran, the Singapore-based Chairman and Managing Partner of GCC Asia Growth Fund. Let’s be clear – Thakran is not engaging in wishful thinking. One of his entities – Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp. – earlier this month acquired US-based Wheels Up Partners Holdings, whose business model is based on offering seats on any available private jet that’s there in their neighbourhood. The intention – make private jet travel available to more than just the super-rich or corporate clients. And the rates? In the range of “Business Class plus…”Ravi Thakran, who has had stints with LVMH, Swatch and Nike, has set sights on bringing in a few changes to the business of private jets. His plan? Expand the user base.Irish Eden R. Belleza/Gulf News Wheels Up's way Headquartered in the US, the Wheels Up concept works on connecting prospective fliers with private jet owners or operators. The model works on expanding the base of users of private jets beyond the xtremely wealthy, the celebrities and top corporate executives. Wheels Up services include membership programmes, on-demand private flights across all cabin categories, aircraft management, and aircraft sales. It manages the private jet fleet of Delta Air Lines. In 2020, the company flew more than 150,000 passengers, utilizing its access to over 1,500 owned, managed, and third-party partner aircraft. With its plans to head to the Middle East and Far East hubs, Wheels Up wants to further its fleet of ready-to-fly jets. Heading to the Middle East The deal, which values Wheels Up at $2.1 billion and get a listing on NYSE, will see the company expand its reach beyond the US into the Middle East and Asia. But will this concept fly in untested markets? “During the pandemic, while there were headwinds for the airline industry as such, it actually created a tailwind for private jet aviation,” said Thakran, who in another avatar was the head of Asia operations at the French luxury goods giant LVMH, which is the home of Louis Vuitton, Givenchy and Christian Dior. “In the Middle East itself, private jet flying during 2020 was up 20 per cent plus, while in the US, it was up by 36 per cent. And in many other parts of the world, there was similar double-digit growth. “There are between 850 to 1,500 private jet aircrafts in the MEA region, but which spend 90-95 per cent of the time on the ground. A 95 per cent utilisation rate is way too low. “With Wheels Up, we are bringing a new-generation tech platform that will be able to connect aspirational consumers on one side and tens of thousands of private aircraft on the other.” That’s where the Uber concept comes in. $ 2.1 Billion What Wheels Up is valued at after the latest deal Take up rates soar Thakran’s views about COVID-19 and private jet demand are on the ball. Demand shot up immediately after several countries imposed lockdown measures and those who could afford it chose to fly private to get back to wherever they wanted. Corporates flew in or out their key executives as and when they needed, and ensure business continuity. (In the UAE, there were a handful of business houses that chartered private jets to help those who were stranded here a chance to return.) Now that more fliers have had a taste for private jets, Thakran reckons it will become habit forming. “It was a first-time experience for many - they are not going to go back to commercial flights,” he added. “There’s a McKinsey study that says 90 per cent of those who can afford to fly in private jets have not done so because they feel it’s too costly. Or have concerns about how to go about it.” This is where the Wheels Up app and systems kick into gear. Tap a few times on the app and the prospective flier gets to have a selection rates and jets to make the ride happen. Much like an Uber… “When you create a subscription model like Wheels Up, it creates a much faster adoption rate,” said Thakran. “You have the dynamic pricing, which we think it will generate higher adoption rates. The whole process becomes as easy as buying a ticket for the NBA or NFL.” Partner search Outside of the US, Thakran reckons Wheels Up’s best prospects would lie in the UAE and Middle East, as well as in the Far East. The plan is to rope in a partner, preferably one from the UAE. “In the Middle East, the UAE is the best place to exploit this concept,” he said. “With the new aerospace hub that the UAE is building and the investments that have gone in, I don’t think there’s another region in Asia Pacific that’s putting as much focus into aviation. “A partnership with a player in the UAE and create a central hub for the region will be a fantastic. There is Saudi Arabia is upping investments in this field - but UAE has the advantages. We will be encouraging Wheels Up to consider an alliance, do a collaboration.” Change mindset But to get traction, Thakran and Wheels Up will need to work on mindsets as well. The majority of the private jets in the Middle East are owned by high networth individuals or corporates. “The Middle East has always believed in a full ownership model,” said Thakran. “But if a number of owners of these 850 jets can be convinced to place their aircraft on the Wheels Up platform, their utilisation rates will shoot up. “If 5 per cent is the actual utilisation rate in the US, it’s even less for private jets in the UAE and Middle East. We could change that. There are way to monetize that time, and it will be great for everyone - provided that jet owners are open to leasing their aircraft.” That’s what Wheels Up and Thakran will hope to find out… soon.

GulfNews TOP

Valiant Clinic and Hospital sets new standards in luxury medical care

Health|: Dubai’s increasing attraction as a health and wellness destination has paved the way for private healthcare to flourish in the emirate, offering the highest standards and quality care for medical visitors from the region and across the world, not to mention an existing community of citizens and residents with discerning preferences. Emerging as one of Dubai’s most luxurious medical care facilities providing a first-class environment for diagnostic and wellness pursuits is Valiant Clinic and Hospital. The hospital is boldly setting a trend in the luxury healthcare segment to meet the needs of patients who have the penchant for details when it comes to getting their treatment done. The boutique clinic and hospital, located within Dubai’s new and upscale destination and retail complex City Walk, is making way for its patients to access a premium multi-specialty facility, served by physicians, surgeons and health professionals experienced in evidence-based healthcare in line with the international standards of ethics and quality. As a community-based and patient-centred healthcare network, Valiant Clinic and Hospital adheres to the highest standards in safety and the national precautionary measures, ensuring patients and visitors a comfortable experience while maintaining the health protocols against the spread of the Covid-19. Image Credit: Supplied The modern facility has an evidence-based design with green spaces and visual aesthetics as a part of its commitment to provide a healing environment and ease any visitor from worry as they enter the spacious environment in a 15,000-square-metre facility. It caters to patients seeking consultation experiences in an exclusive and luxurious environment that meets their specific needs. Valiant Clinic and Hospital hails from the Belhoul Lifecare, which has established its name as one of the most reputable in the UAE and the region’s medical community in the past 25 years. The clinic and hospital offer a holistic healthcare experience from the moment they enter the door of Valiant Clinic and Hospital to their complete recovery. Its patient-centric approach is supported by state-of-the-art medical technologies and internationally trained and Western board-certified medical experts, backed by highly experienced allied staff in the field. Suite of wellness Overall wellness is one of the main highlights under Valiant’s care where individuals can benefit from a suite of health services for any of their concerns. The wide range of services enable patients to avail premium services and facilities through Valiant’s special packages programme with easy payment schemes, which are valid until March 31, 2021. Image Credit: Supplied Allergy skin test such as six or eight times of skin prick test for respiratory allergens is available for a minimum of Dh345. Cervical screening, which involves specialist consultation and pap smear, comes to only Dh300. For weight loss programme involving Elipse Balloon, patients are treated with gastric balloon placement (non-surgical), abdominal X-ray, gastroenterology consultation, six months of dietary coaching within eight sessions, and use of a smart scale application to track progress, for a total cost of Dh13,999, while other custom-designed obesity and weight-loss programme comes for only Dh1,500. For Invisalign dental services, which cost Dh15,999, patients are provided with comprehensive exam, panoramic, Invisalign records, use of KOR double syringe only, and retainer. Taking care of aviators Valiant Clinic and Hospital also brings home to Dubai unique and emerging specialties such as aviation medicine, which has been gaining importance in recent years. “Due to the rapid transmission of communicable diseases while inflight, as well as the range of preventive, occupational, environmental, and clinical aspects for inflight personnel, medical services for the aviation sector becomes even more important, especially in strategic flight hubs such as Dubai,” says Dr Mustapha Rashid, Specialist Family Medicine & Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). “The availability of this specialty at Valiant Clinic and Hospital meets the emirate’s busy aviation sector’s needs for world- class diagnostic and medical examination centre.” Valiant’s Aviation Centre offers aviation medical examinations that meet the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) medical renewal for pilots and air traffic controllers, as well as GCAA medical renewal and initial test for cabin crew. It also conducts aviation cardiology examinations for all airline professionals as well as for crew with licence restrictions. Other tests available include ENT examinations and drug screening services for all aviation purposes. Holistic pain management Managing pain can be challenging for many sufferers and the hospital has taken a comprehensive pain management approach to alleviate the conditions of patients. Dr Mohamed Salah El Toukhy, Consultant for Pain Medicine, says: “We have a supportive environment that empowers patients in facing the debilitating effects of pain on their physical and mental well-being. Patients suffering from acute and chronic pain can benefit from advanced treatment options, which enable them to control and reduce the associated stress, anxiety and depression caused by pain.” Image Credit: Supplied A combination of different therapies, which include medication, interventional procedures, and rehabilitation therapy through a specialised team of physiotherapists, help its patients who are suffering from low back/sacroiliac joint pain, leg pain and sciatica, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease (discogenic pain), neck pain and headache, and nerve pain. High-profile orthopaedic experts For bones and joints surgery, patients can rely upon the expertise of known international experts in the field including Dr Milan Handl, a specialist orthopaedic surgeon who is experienced in treating a wide range of cases including musculoskeletal disorders and elective trauma situations for all patient age groups – from infants to the elderly – and in treating sports injuries. “Here at Valiant Clinic and Hospital, we are equipped with the most up-to-date procedures to treat joint cartilage repair including grafts, scaffolds utilisation, and intra-articular ligaments reconstruction,” he says. “We also consider total joints replacement as a proper solution for severe degenerative stages in all joints, in addition to employing the most advanced in treatment for muscles and tendons using PRP or mesenchymal stem cells.” Dr Charalampos Harris Zourelidis is an orthopaedic surgeon at the hospital who exercises the full spectrum of a multidisciplinary approach to the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders such as sport injuries, joint pain, arthritis, acute and chronic back pain, and fractures. “Evidence-based care practice has become an essential aspect of treatment in modern medicine and brings in strong value for patients as they are first educated about their condition to enable them to thoroughly make informed choices of the suitable and most comfortable treatment options,” says Dr Zourelidis. “The multidisciplinary approach provides us with the opportunity to address and discuss difficult or highly unique cases.” For spine treatments, Dr Zbigniew J. Brodzinski, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon, leads the team of spine experts notable for their abilities, having given care to some of the most difficult-to-treat conditions including degenerative scoliosis and other spine deformities, cervical (neck) spine problems, herniated discs, spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis, spine trauma, vertebral fractures due to osteoporosis, spinal tumours, and acquired spine abnormalities. “Surgery is the last resort, but if needed, we have highly trained surgeons from the United States and Europe who can perform minimally invasive techniques, which use the latest operations equipment such neuronavigational and neuromonitoring devices, while for complex spine surgery, precision is of utmost importance, and we use a computer-assisted 3D spinal navigation surgery to ensure accuracy and optimize safety,” he adds. Complementing medical innovation and world-class experts with a strategic location and a modern and luxurious setting, Valiant Clinic and Hospital is set to pave a new path of healthcare excellence for Dubai’s pampered residents and visitors as they go through life-changing experiences towards revitalising and reviving their health to the optimum condition. To book appointments, call 800 8254268 or email appointments@valiant.ae Valiant Clinic and Hospital accepts the following insurance: Bupa Oman Insurance, Mednet, Neuron, NextCare, Thiqa, AXA, Almadallah, Saico Health, Daman, Aetna & NAS.

GulfNews UAE

Valiant Clinic and Hospital sets new standards in luxury medical care

Health|: Dubai’s increasing attraction as a health and wellness destination has paved the way for private healthcare to flourish in the emirate, offering the highest standards and quality care for medical visitors from the region and across the world, not to mention an existing community of citizens and residents with discerning preferences. Emerging as one of Dubai’s most luxurious medical care facilities providing a first-class environment for diagnostic and wellness pursuits is Valiant Clinic and Hospital. The hospital is boldly setting a trend in the luxury healthcare segment to meet the needs of patients who have the penchant for details when it comes to getting their treatment done. The boutique clinic and hospital, located within Dubai’s new and upscale destination and retail complex City Walk, is making way for its patients to access a premium multi-specialty facility, served by physicians, surgeons and health professionals experienced in evidence-based healthcare in line with the international standards of ethics and quality. As a community-based and patient-centred healthcare network, Valiant Clinic and Hospital adheres to the highest standards in safety and the national precautionary measures, ensuring patients and visitors a comfortable experience while maintaining the health protocols against the spread of the Covid-19. Image Credit: Supplied The modern facility has an evidence-based design with green spaces and visual aesthetics as a part of its commitment to provide a healing environment and ease any visitor from worry as they enter the spacious environment in a 15,000-square-metre facility. It caters to patients seeking consultation experiences in an exclusive and luxurious environment that meets their specific needs. Valiant Clinic and Hospital hails from the Belhoul Lifecare, which has established its name as one of the most reputable in the UAE and the region’s medical community in the past 25 years. The clinic and hospital offer a holistic healthcare experience from the moment they enter the door of Valiant Clinic and Hospital to their complete recovery. Its patient-centric approach is supported by state-of-the-art medical technologies and internationally trained and Western board-certified medical experts, backed by highly experienced allied staff in the field. Suite of wellness Overall wellness is one of the main highlights under Valiant’s care where individuals can benefit from a suite of health services for any of their concerns. The wide range of services enable patients to avail premium services and facilities through Valiant’s special packages programme with easy payment schemes, which are valid until March 31, 2021. Image Credit: Supplied Allergy skin test such as six or eight times of skin prick test for respiratory allergens is available for a minimum of Dh345. Cervical screening, which involves specialist consultation and pap smear, comes to only Dh300. For weight loss programme involving Elipse Balloon, patients are treated with gastric balloon placement (non-surgical), abdominal X-ray, gastroenterology consultation, six months of dietary coaching within eight sessions, and use of a smart scale application to track progress, for a total cost of Dh13,999, while other custom-designed obesity and weight-loss programme comes for only Dh1,500. For Invisalign dental services, which cost Dh15,999, patients are provided with comprehensive exam, panoramic, Invisalign records, use of KOR double syringe only, and retainer. Taking care of aviators Valiant Clinic and Hospital also brings home to Dubai unique and emerging specialties such as aviation medicine, which has been gaining importance in recent years. “Due to the rapid transmission of communicable diseases while inflight, as well as the range of preventive, occupational, environmental, and clinical aspects for inflight personnel, medical services for the aviation sector becomes even more important, especially in strategic flight hubs such as Dubai,” says Dr Mustapha Rashid, Specialist Family Medicine & Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). “The availability of this specialty at Valiant Clinic and Hospital meets the emirate’s busy aviation sector’s needs for world- class diagnostic and medical examination centre.” Valiant’s Aviation Centre offers aviation medical examinations that meet the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) medical renewal for pilots and air traffic controllers, as well as GCAA medical renewal and initial test for cabin crew. It also conducts aviation cardiology examinations for all airline professionals as well as for crew with licence restrictions. Other tests available include ENT examinations and drug screening services for all aviation purposes. Holistic pain management Managing pain can be challenging for many sufferers and the hospital has taken a comprehensive pain management approach to alleviate the conditions of patients. Dr Mohamed Salah El Toukhy, Consultant for Pain Medicine, says: “We have a supportive environment that empowers patients in facing the debilitating effects of pain on their physical and mental well-being. Patients suffering from acute and chronic pain can benefit from advanced treatment options, which enable them to control and reduce the associated stress, anxiety and depression caused by pain.” Image Credit: Supplied A combination of different therapies, which include medication, interventional procedures, and rehabilitation therapy through a specialised team of physiotherapists, help its patients who are suffering from low back/sacroiliac joint pain, leg pain and sciatica, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease (discogenic pain), neck pain and headache, and nerve pain. High-profile orthopaedic experts For bones and joints surgery, patients can rely upon the expertise of known international experts in the field including Dr Milan Handl, a specialist orthopaedic surgeon who is experienced in treating a wide range of cases including musculoskeletal disorders and elective trauma situations for all patient age groups – from infants to the elderly – and in treating sports injuries. “Here at Valiant Clinic and Hospital, we are equipped with the most up-to-date procedures to treat joint cartilage repair including grafts, scaffolds utilisation, and intra-articular ligaments reconstruction,” he says. “We also consider total joints replacement as a proper solution for severe degenerative stages in all joints, in addition to employing the most advanced in treatment for muscles and tendons using PRP or mesenchymal stem cells.” Dr Charalampos Harris Zourelidis is an orthopaedic surgeon at the hospital who exercises the full spectrum of a multidisciplinary approach to the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders such as sport injuries, joint pain, arthritis, acute and chronic back pain, and fractures. “Evidence-based care practice has become an essential aspect of treatment in modern medicine and brings in strong value for patients as they are first educated about their condition to enable them to thoroughly make informed choices of the suitable and most comfortable treatment options,” says Dr Zourelidis. “The multidisciplinary approach provides us with the opportunity to address and discuss difficult or highly unique cases.” For spine treatments, Dr Zbigniew J. Brodzinski, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon, leads the team of spine experts notable for their abilities, having given care to some of the most difficult-to-treat conditions including degenerative scoliosis and other spine deformities, cervical (neck) spine problems, herniated discs, spinal stenosis and spondylolisthesis, spine trauma, vertebral fractures due to osteoporosis, spinal tumours, and acquired spine abnormalities. “Surgery is the last resort, but if needed, we have highly trained surgeons from the United States and Europe who can perform minimally invasive techniques, which use the latest operations equipment such neuronavigational and neuromonitoring devices, while for complex spine surgery, precision is of utmost importance, and we use a computer-assisted 3D spinal navigation surgery to ensure accuracy and optimize safety,” he adds. Complementing medical innovation and world-class experts with a strategic location and a modern and luxurious setting, Valiant Clinic and Hospital is set to pave a new path of healthcare excellence for Dubai’s pampered residents and visitors as they go through life-changing experiences towards revitalising and reviving their health to the optimum condition. To book appointments, call 800 8254268 or email appointments@valiant.ae Valiant Clinic and Hospital accepts the following insurance: Bupa Oman Insurance, Mednet, Neuron, NextCare, Thiqa, AXA, Almadallah, Saico Health, Daman, Aetna & NAS.