Pakistan Association to build first-ever non-profit medical centre in Dubai

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Dr Faisal Ikram, General Secretary of Pakistan Association Dubai.
Dr Faisal Ikram, General Secretary of Pakistan Association Dubai.

Dubai - The new centre -- to be completed in a span of 18-20 months -- will have a Pakistan medical centre, gym, restaurant, offices block and a mosque.

By Saman Haziq

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Published: Wed 10 Aug 2016, 12:22 PM

Last updated: Fri 16 Dec 2022, 11:33 AM

The UAE is all set to get its very own 'Pakistan Centre' on the occasion of Pakistan Independence Day on August 14. The Pakistan Association Dubai (PAD) is offically launching this landmark expansion project, at an estimated cost of Dh12 million.

It's a dream come true for the large Pakistani expatriate population, especially in Dubai. Dr Faisal Ikram, General Secretary of PAD, said: "Pakistanis living in Dubai have always had this dream of a common centre where all community members can meet, socialise, strengthen their bonds and identity as Pakistanis. The project will thus commence under our ideal of 'One nation, one dream'."

Dr Ikram announced the details at a press conference on Tuesday, where the community paid homage to the victims of the recent hospital bomb attack in Quetta.

The centre - to be completed in 18-20 months - will house a medical centre, gym, restaurant, an office block, mosque, and a play area for children, to cater to the community's social welfare needs. The highlight is the medical centre, a not-for-profit one, the first of its kind in the GCC by any expatriate community.

"We believe the health of a people is directly related to the well-being of its community. Many doctors in all major specialties across the region today are Pakistanis," Dr Ikram noted. The medical centre will also capitalise on the experience of PAD's medical wing.

"We have been conducting free monthly health camps for the past seven years on the PAD premises, and even in labour accommodations. this gave us an insight into the community's health needs. A large number of Pakistanis here do not have access to quality health services. So the plan is to support public health issues, training and research, as well as partnerships across communities," Dr Ikram pointed out.

Government authorities such as the Community Development Authority, Dubai Health Authority, Red Crescent, Dar Al Ber, and the Dubai Department of Economic Development are supporting the Pakistan Centre.

The new Pakistan Centre as it will look after completion

'Own a Brick' concept

Fundraising for the Dh 12 million Pakistan Centre project will done via a unique concept called 'Own a Brick'. Instead of soliciting donations from community members, they will be given the option of ownership in the Centre.

Elaborating on it, Dr Ikram said: "We will need a total of about 12,000 bricks to build the centre; each brick will be sold for Dh1,000 to community members, to cover the Dh12 million cost. The buyers thus automatically become association members."

One nation, One dream... and a green building

PAD's current premises in Oud Metha will be demolished and a new two-storey building - in line with UAE architectural aesthetics - will be constructed. The ground floor will feature the restaurant, offices, mosque, and seminar rooms. The first floor will house the medical centre, with extended facilities including doctors for different specialities, a lab, and X-ray.

The medical centre will also aim to be completely paperless, and collaborate with Dubai hospitals such as American Hospital, City Hospital, Aster, and RAK Dental College for polyclinic support.

The centre will also take the green route, in keeping with the UAE's efforts in sustainable buildings. "Solar panels on the terrace will make it green and energy-efficient," Dr Ikram said.

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