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Research and Studies

Publish Date: 30-12-2013 | A- A A+

Currently, the National Rehabilitation Center has a fully operational Research Section along with an authorized Research Ethics Committee. The Research Section seeks to: firstly, provide evidence-based data that would be used to improve the public health of UAE Nationals; secondly, disseminate academic knowledge through its participation in events and gatherings in UAE and abroad; finally, catalyze addiction-based researches in collaboration with academic and public health organizations in UAE.

Since its creation in 2011, the Research Section has embarked on several projects and partnerships. So far, it has finalized two remarkable projects: “The Demographic Data of NRC Patients” published in the International Journal of Addiction Prevention and Treatment and “Primary Care Survey Project” which is being currently sent to be published in many specialized journals.

On the other hand, the Research Section has entered into several research agreements with local and international organizations. Currently, it is in the process of implementing the Training Model of Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment Method (SBIRT) which includes training primary care physicians on diagnosis of substance abuse, brief intervention and referral to treatment. The project is being carried out in cooperation with the Ambulatory health Services (AHS) in Abu Dhabi and the University of Aberdeen in the UK.

At the present time, the Research Section is carrying out “NRC Patient Genes” in cooperation with Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research ‘KUSTAR’; it is also planning to launch “Smoking Cessation Project” targeting Abu Dhabi residents in cooperation with New York University Abu Dhabi.

With continuous support, the Research Section is looking forward to extending its scope of responsibilities to include researches on addiction prevention and clinical checkups using the latest addiction medications in cooperation with US National Institute on Drug Abuse.
An overview of the current, future and collaboration projects is presented below.

A Comprehensive Study on NRC Patients

The National Rehabilitation Center has conducted a research study on patient treatment findings entitled “An Overview of Patients with Disorders of Psychotropic Substance Abuse and Treatment Findings: A 10-Year Retrospective Study” in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences of UAE University. The study is intended to examine the patients who sought addiction treatment in and were evaluated and treated by NRC over a period of 10 years between May 2002 and August 2011. The study also aims to compare and evaluate the effectiveness of several treatment methods used by NRC over the past 10 years and to track Abu Dhabi-wide addiction situation where the NRC patients serve as a representative sample.

Study on Genes

NRC has signed an MOU with KUSTAR to conduct bilateral study on genes with significant roles in addiction. Blood samples taken from NRC patients will be collected and examined to identify the genes which are thought to make some persons more vulnerable to narcotic substances than others. Similar to studies already conducted in several European countries and in the United States, the NRC-KUSTAR study is unprecedented in UAE and will target 250 patients over a period of two years.

Study on SMS Effectiveness in Smoking Cessation

NRC is in the process of signing an MOU with New York University to conduct a bilateral study on smoking quit intended mainly to help and encourage smokers to quit smoking. Mobile-based short messages ‘SMS’ will be drafted by a specialized team of behavioral health professionals to help and encourage persons quit smoking and to control the urge to smoke especially after smoking quit. Finding of similar studies conducted in England and New Zealand showed that SMS have doubled the number of smokers who have stopped smoking either through self-motivation or with the help of smoking cessation programs. targeting more than 5,000 smokers, the study will last three years.

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