Dubai – MENA Herald: The UAE Ministry of Health has announced the launch of the Health Education Guide for School Students under the patronage of Dr. Hussein Abdel-Rahman Al Rand, Undersecretary of the Ministry’s Health Assistant Sector – Health Centers and Clinics. This first-of-its-kind initiative in the UAE is a result of cooperation between the Primary Healthcare Department represented by the School health section and the Health Education and promotion Department.

The Manual was launched on Monday, 26 October 2015 to help health educators and school nurses to spread information and improve skills in an interactive manner to encourage the participation of students. This will impact the health behaviors of the students, enabling them to adopt healthy lifestyle in the future.

Dr. Al Rand affirmed that the Ministry is committed to undertake the best efforts to spread the culture of healthy lifestyle, starting with school students who represent the core of next generations. In addition, the Ministry attempts to avoid all procedures that may negatively affect the health and studies of students. Dr. Al Rand pointed that the Manual comes in line with the Ministry’s 2014-2016 National Strategy for the UAE’s Health Sector, which aims to enhance healthy lifestyle in the country to prevent the onset of lifestyle related diseases as well as develop preventative healthcare system to control the spread of no communicable diseases.

The Undersecretary stated that the adoption of the School Health Educational Manual for students is based on the interactive skills between students and the educator. He reiterated that the Ministry will continue to train female and male nurses at schools to implement

The health education guide and raise awareness among students to encourage them to adopt healthy lifestyles at different stages of their life.

The Manual is divided into two sections. The first includes lesson plans explaining in details the way of giving the lessons and the material required materials as well as the time needed for each topic and the age of the students targeted by the lesson. It also has additional segments such as pre- and post-evaluations and interactive activities. The second section consists of a floppy disk that contains Power Point presentations to be presented during sessions along with educational videos related to the lesson.

After the launch, the first training workshop was held for a few nurses working in schools to educate them to use the manual. The School Health section will train all nurses working in public schools in the coming few months on how to use the guide. The guide includes 18 lessons in Arabic with plans to add more subjects and translate it into English in the future.

The Manual is based on interactive style and uses games, role plays and questions to make the subjects more attractive for students, resulting in improved communication between students and nurses and adoption of healthy practices.