Jawaher calls for greater investment in medical research


LONDON: Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, has said that greater investment is required in medical research for cancer and Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) to enable the global community to enter a new era in NCD control.

Sheikha Jawaher who is the founder and Royal Patron of Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP) International Ambassador of the World Cancer Declaration for the Union for International Cancer Control, UICC, International Ambassador for Childhood Cancer for UICC and Patron of the Global Non-Communicable Diseases Alliance, NCDA, Forum, made the call during a visit to The Royal Marsden and Cancer Research UK, where she was introduced to some of the latest initiatives in the fight against carcinoma.

She praised all scientists, doctors and researchers who strive to serve humanity through their contributions to alleviating the burden of cancer and other NCDs, describing them as ‘Knights of Humanity.’ Sheikha Jawaher reiterated that it was imperative that all decision-makers, corporate bodies and members of the community support these essential medical professionals in order to fully realise their potential to protect our present and future health.

During her tour of The Royal Marsden in London, the largest specialist cancer treatment centre in Europe and the oldest and one of the most renowned cancer centres in the world, Sheikha Jawaher visited its various departments and units, and was introduced to state-of-the-art techniques used in the treatment of cancer. Among these was ‘CyberKnife,’ a technology involving radiation therapy and a treatment that is being provided by donations to The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. She was also introduced to the hospital’s Ralph Lauren Centre for Breast Cancer Research and its Breast Cancer Tissue Bank, and was updated on the latest medical research initiatives which contribute to the early detection of cancer.

On the sidelines of her visit, a meeting was held to discuss ways of strengthening joint cooperation between the Royal Marsden and the Sharjah-based FoCP, with a focus on training and treatment. At the end of the meeting, Sheikha Jawaher presented two shields of honour to the administration staff of The Royal Marsden and the Ralph Lauren Centre for Breast Cancer Research.

“We are delighted to welcome Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi to The Royal Marsden in London and look forward to working closely with the Friends of Cancer Patients over the coming months and years for the benefit of cancer patients in both our countries, and around the rest of the world,” said Shams Maladwala, Managing Director, The Royal Marsden Private Care.

During her visit to Cancer Research UK, Sheikha Jawaher was briefed on the Francis Crick Institute, which is currently under construction and expected to be inaugurated at the end of this year. The Crick is a pioneering medical research facility in the heart of London that will see more than 1,200 scientists coming together under one roof to tackle major diseases, such as cancer, that pose the greatest threat to humanity.

“We are delighted to welcome Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi to our head office and for the opportunity to thank her in person for her tireless efforts in fighting cancer in the UAE and around the world. Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading charity dedicated to cancer research, investing $500 million in the 2015/16 financial year to prevent, control and cure some 200 types of the disease. Cancer is a global problem that needs a global solution and we are committed to working with partners worldwide to beat this disease,” said Nick Grant, Executive Director of International Partnerships at Cancer Research UK.

Cancer Research UK’s management praised the outstanding efforts of the Emirate of Sharjah and the UAE in spreading awareness of cancer and providing free detection tests and screenings to its citizens. They also commended Sharjah’s recently acquired status as the region’s first Healthy City.

Sheikha Jawaher was accompanied by Ameera BinKaram, Founding Member and President of the Board of Trustees of FoCP, Sawsan Jafar, Founding Member and Board of Trustees Member of FoCP, Noura Al Noman, Director-General of the Executive Office of Sheikha Jawaher Al Qasimi, Noura Khalifa Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Women’s Union, Reem Al Falasi, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, Dr Sawsan Al Madhi, Director-General of FoCP, and Alia Abdullah Al Mazrouei, Board Member of the Abu Dhabi Business Women Council.