MoH Plans to Organize GCC Complementary Medicine Conference
Dr. Amin Hussein Al Amiri, Assistant Undersecretary for Medical Practices and Licenses at the Ministry of Health, stated that the Ministry of Health does not allow any practices in the field of complementary medicine unless the practitioners pass the required exams in the medical and health fields. The ministry does not permit the licensing of any establishment to practice medical activities including complementary medicine unless they conform to the general conditions and terms in this regard.

Al Amiri suggested that a GCC meeting in the field of complementary medicine to be held in the UAE to discuss the practices of this type of medicine in the gulf region and agree on common standards and basics to regulate the practices of complementary medicine in the region. The conference to be held under the umbrella of the executive office of the GCC Health Ministers Council soon.

He also emphasized that the United Arab Emirates gives great concern to complementary medicine since 15 years noting that the Ministry of Health encourages private medical sector and all medical practices on condition they follow the rules, regulations and standards of medical practices in the country.

This was stated during the meeting with delegations from Saudi Ozone Company, Sharjah Center for Complementary Medicine and Saudi Consulate which was attended by Fahd Muawad, Director General of the GCC Consul General in Dubai, Sami Al Awaz, CEO of Saudi Ozone, Dr. Hayman Al Nahaal, Director General of Sharjah Center for Complementary Medicine and Dr. Adel Eskandar, Ozone Treatment Specialist and Dr. Ahmed Al Zarooni, Director of Medical Licensing Department in the Ministry of Health.

Al Amiri lauded the efforts of the private sector in the medical and health field noting that the ministry aims for strengthening societal partnerships between all related health services authorities.

He also assured that the complementary medicine is very important and requires all the health specialists in the region to agree on common standards and mechanisms to regulate its practices. The Ministry also puts certain conditions for the licensing of complementary medicine practices especially Chinese acupuncture, ozone therapy and home therapy. It also states that practitioners must have not less than high school certificate, experience in the field, and pass the exams of the medical practices department in the ministry and understandings of first aid to obtain the licensing of cupping through a medical center and under the supervision of a doctor.

According to the medical practices licensing in the UAE about 30 practitioners were obtain the licensing while the ministry also approved 7 practitioners to practice cupping in approved medical centers.

Al Amiri assured the importance of coordination between the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Environment as it is responsible for municipalities to prevent unacceptable practices of herbalists who claim their knowledge of complementary medicine. The Ministry of Health and competent authorities banned the practice of massaging and use of lasers in hair salons and prevented massaging and laser in saloons. It also put certain conditions to regulate these practices while demands all practitioners to obtain licensing from competent authorities in the UAE.