Survey of UAE Frontline Professionals Identifies
Top Five Themes for Frontline Hero Support and Recognition
Abu Dhabi, 07 September 2020: The Frontline Heroes Office has established a comprehensive national database of over 80,000 frontline professionals and volunteers actively protecting the UAE and its residents in the fight against COVID-19. The new registry is a significant milestone in an initiative to care for and champion those who put themselves on the frontline in service to the people of the UAE.
The registry provides a detailed national picture of all those who serve on the frontline in the fight against COVID-19, to not only recognize and champion their commitment to public service but also to support their ongoing well-being through enabling the design and provision of a wide range of targeted support services and programs.
The registry was created by the Frontline Heroes Office and collates data from people on the frontline provided directly by entities at the federal and emirate level involved in the pandemic response, including those entities under the umbrella of the National Crisis and Emergency Management Authority (NCEMA), and licensed healthcare facilities in every emirate. It covers the full spectrum of UAE citizens and expatriates who have put themselves on the frontline in service to the country, including healthcare practitioners, police, essential service providers, crisis managers, security and emergency service providers, humanitarian agencies, sterilization personnel and volunteers.
The Frontline Heroes Office was established in July 2020 by decree of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and is under the direction of the Chairman His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces.
The Office is mandated to listen and respond to the challenges and priorities of the UAE’s frontline professionals, implement short-term and long-term solutions to directly address those needs, as well as ensure those who sacrifice and put themselves at risk to protect the people of the UAE are nationally recognized and celebrated. The Frontline Heroes Office will deliver on its mandate through partnerships and collaborations with government entities, the private sector and the wider community across the Emirates through a wide range of initiatives and special programs that directly support frontline heroes.
Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of the Frontline Heroes Office, said: “Our frontline heroes make the choice every day to put their own health and wellbeing at risk to protect the lives of people across our nation. We owe it to them to recognize their heroic efforts and ensure we are providing our frontline professionals and their families the same level of protection and support they offer us.”
Dr. Maha Barakat, Director General of the Frontline Heroes Office, said that while the office was established in direct response to the global pandemic, which has seen people on the frontline fighting the war against COVID-19 day and night for the past 6 months, it is a permanent federal entity mandated to ensure the UAE maintains a strong and comprehensive network of frontline professionals to respond to any future crisis or emergency that threatens the nation and its people.
“We must always be prepared and ready to immediately and effectively respond to any crisis or emergency we face today and anytime in the future for the protection of our people and our society. To help our nation maintain a frontline workforce ready and able to take on the sacrifices and risks we ask, we owe it to them to ensure they are appropriately recognized and supported by our government and our people. Our first task has been to directly engage with and listen to our frontline heroes to truly understand what matters most to them,” Dr. Barakat said.
To drive the development of its support and recognition programs, the Frontline Heroes Office surveyed nearly 8,000 frontline professionals working in healthcare facilities across the UAE as well as those working in entities under the NCEMA umbrella. The national survey was structured to directly engage the UAE’s frontline heroes to hear from them the challenges and stresses they face that the office could help address.
That research showed that overall job satisfaction among UAE healthcare frontline professionals is extremely high. 85% of those surveyed reported that overall they are satisfied with their jobs despite the pandemic-related pressures. When asked about quality of facility infrastructure and availability of adequate resources to manage the current situation, results also came in at 86% and above stating their satisfaction.
Also significant is that the UAE’s frontline healthcare professionals overwhelmingly approve of the government’s handling of the outbreak. Nearly 95% of those surveyed support the coordinated national pandemic response, far greater than reports coming from other countries worldwide.
But the frontline professionals surveyed also identified clear pain points and challenges that the Frontline Heroes Office will work to address through its support program. Analysis of the research findings identified five central themes as areas of focus for the Office. Those themes include recognition and appreciation, overall health and wellbeing, job satisfaction, cost of living, and long-term job retention.
“Our frontline heroes are genuinely committed to and believe in the united together mantra of our nation’s leaders as the key to successfully overcoming this pandemic. At the same time, we need to always work to better understand and respond to the pain points and challenges our frontline heroes face. We want to create an environment where these incredibly talented and committed frontline heroes receive the kind of support and recognition that makes them want to continue to build their careers and raise their families here in the UAE,” Dr. Barakat said.
The Frontline Heroes Office will begin announcing and rolling out its support programs in the coming weeks. This will include support and services provided to people on the frontline across the UAE, initiatives targeted to address specific needs, as well as initiatives that will benefit the families of frontline heroes.