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Interview - Decontamination during incidents: Dr Ghuwaya Al Neyadi, manager, ADNOC Medical Services Unit

by Martin Menachery on Sep 6, 2017


Dr Ghuwaya Al Neyadi, manager, ADNOC Medical Services Unit.
Dr Ghuwaya Al Neyadi, manager, ADNOC Medical Services Unit.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has commissioned three Mobile Decontamination Units into service to provide clinical decontamination during any chemical, biological, radiation, nuclear and explosives (CBRNE) incidents. Dr Ghuwaya Al Neyadi, manager, ADNOC Medical Services Unit, explains the purpose of these innovative units, in an interview given to Martin Menachery.

What is the objective of the Mobile Decontamination Units demonstrated by ADNOC?

The ADNOC Mobile Decontamination Units have the capability to carry out clinical decontamination from chemical, biological, radiation, nuclear and explosives incidents. Healthcare facilities close to oil and gas production and nuclear sites have a higher possibility of receiving contami-nated patients due to the presence of numerous hazardous materials associated with the industry.

Apart from serving ADNOC’s operations in the Al Dhafra (formerly Western) region, ADNOC’s Ruwais Hospital is designated as the primary receiving healthcare facility for major incidents, involving the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant. With the addition of the Mobile Decontamination Units, it is now fully equipped to manage and provide clinical decontamination during any chemical, biological, radiation, nuclear and explosives incidents.

Are these units already deployed into service?

All three Mobile Decontamination Units are operational and fully functional at the Ruwais Hospital. Construction work on the hospital’s decontamination building is also nearing completion.

Can you elaborate on how does  it function?

The Mobile Decontamination Unit is a licensed healthcare facility designed in-house and specifically engineered to suit the hot, remote and desert environment in which we operate. It is the first of its kind in the region, built by merging healthcare technology with ADNOC oil and gas industry technology.

Each Mobile Decontamination Unit consists of a clinical decontamination area (de-robe, decontamination and re-robe) and is based on a 40ft container, mounted on a trailer fitted with side-lifters, hitched to a six-wheel drive truck capable of accessing the desert terrain. Each unit contains a wide array of equipment, including medical treatment equipment, radiation and chemical detection equipment, wind speed and direction monitors, hydrogen sulphide detectors, decontamination personal protective equipment, re-robe kits, specimen sample kits etc.

Each Mobile Decontamination Unit carries 1,000 US gallons of water for around four to six hours of decontamination, and a 1,500 US gallon wastewater system for collecting decontamination water. Each unit has its own generator with fuel to run continuously for 48 hours, air-conditioning, curtain fans and high efficiency particulate air filtration units, providing room pressure and air-flow controls, and toilets that drain separately to holding tanks. The units are capable of being connected to electrical and water supplies and drains, thereby enabling extended operations, if required.

How many units are already with ADNOC? And, how many are in the pipeline?

All three Mobile Decontamination Units are in service with ADNOC. The three units are sufficient for our operations.

Have these units been deployed in any recent incident?

The units have been deployed in numerous training exercises, but they have not been used in real-time emergencies, involving either ADNOC’s operations, or the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant.

How much time will it take for decontamination per person?

It takes around seven to eight minutes to decontaminate a person, depending on whether he, or she, is capable of walking, or not. The Mobile Decontamination Unit is designed to carry out decontamination of both walking and non-walking patients who may be on trolley, or spinal board, or stretcher.


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