The United Arab Emirates, which awarded allopaths the golden visa, recently started issuing ten-year residence visas to doctors practicing Ayurveda and homeopathy.
Photo credit: Delivered

Dubai: As Dr. Shyam Viswanathan Pillai, an Ayurveda doctor from Kerala in India, landed in the United Arab Emirates in 2001, the millennia-old traditional medicine was not an officially recognized treatment system here.

Dr. Pillai, who eventually became the first licensed Ayurveda practitioner after the health authorities began issuing licenses here in 2002, is now the proud holder of the UAE’s prestigious Golden Visa.

The United Arab Emirates, which awarded allopaths the golden visa, recently started issuing ten-year residence visas to doctors practicing Ayurveda and homeopathy. Indian doctors who practice these traditional forms of treatment, including Dr. Pillai, have praised the government for recognizing alternative and complementary medicine in the country.

Dr. Shyam Viswanathan Pillai

“The growth of Ayurveda in the United Arab Emirates has been significant,” said Dr. Pillai, whose chain of clinics in the United Arab Emirates currently has five branches, told Gulf News. He said the government issuing gold visas to Ayurveda practitioners is a great tribute to the impact they have made in health care in the UAE. “We are very grateful to the authorities for that,” he added.

The clinics of Dr. Pillai have a database of around 50,000 patients in the United Arab Emirates, he claimed.

Ayurveda is not just massage therapy. Even surgical interventions can be performed by specialized Ayurvedic doctors, said Dr. Pillai, who did his master’s degree in a branch of surgery (Shalya Tantra) in Ayurveda.

Across borders, religions

Dr. Jasna Jamal, another Ayurveda practitioner who received the Golden Vtisa, said Ayurveda grew across borders and religions to help the global community.

Dr. Jasna Jamal

“The fact that the ancient Indian medical system can still be practiced in places like the United Arab Emirates itself is evidence that this system has scientifically proven benefits for humanity,” said Dr. Jamal, who runs the Ayurveda clinic and treatment center from Dr. Jasna in Al. directs Mamzar. “Ayurveda has long been recognized as a medical science and you must take entrance exams and take professional courses to qualify as a health practitioner,” she added.

After getting her license in the United Arab Emirates 12 years ago, Dr. Jamal that the role of Ayurveda in preventive medicine and in the treatment of several chronic health problems is huge as it improves the body’s healing system.

She said that patients in the United Arab Emirates are primarily seeking Ayurvedic treatment for neck pain, back pain, arthritis, skin diseases, sinusitis, migraines and supportive care for chronic patients and even cancer patients.

“The government granting us the Golden Visa will increase people’s confidence in Ayurvedic treatment. It is a great recognition for me, ”said Dr. Jamal.

Life’s work

Dr. Dubey Jose, who was one of the first Ayurveda practitioners to receive the Golden Visa on June 4, said the gesture shows the UAE government’s appreciation for traditional treatments her family has practiced for three generations.

Dr. Dubey Jose

“My grandfather and father were Ayurvedic doctors at home. They used to even treat patients with psychiatric problems, ”said Dr. Dubey, who is currently working at the Ayurway Ayurveda Center in Karama. “I’ve only been in the UAE since 2013. Nevertheless, the government showed consideration when issuing the golden visa, ”she said.

“It is a special title that is only given to doctors in the United Arab Emirates. This recognition is like a life’s work. I see this as a stepping stone in my career, ”said Dr. Dubey.

Flexibility, future model

In the meantime, Dr. Pillai points out that the Golden Visa gives holders the flexibility to work with a variety of healthcare facilities. “With the golden visa, Ayurveda practitioners can work with several health care providers. It will benefit a wider patient population, ”he said.

He cited the inclusion of an Ayurveda center – “Vaidyashala” – in the Burjeel Day Surgery Center in Abu Dhabi as a model for integrated medical systems that he believes will be the future of medicine.

Also serving as CEO of Vaidyashala, said Dr. Pillai that the facility has integrated Ayurveda into modern medicine.

The facility, which has been open since December 2020, is referred from various departments of the operations center. “From orthopedics and gynecology to dermatology, we receive referrals for Ayurvedic treatments from various specialist areas.”

Effect of homeopathy

Homeopaths who have received the Golden Visa are also happy about the recognition of the effectiveness of the complementary treatment systems in the UAE. Dr. Neetu Nicholas, a homeopath who has lived in the United Arab Emirates for 20 years, said receiving the Golden Visa on June 15 was the proudest moment for her since practicing in the United Arab Emirates in 2007.

Dr. Neetu Nicholas

“Until then, I had my husband’s visa. When I got the golden visa without being an investor, I felt it was great recognition for homeopathy. Residents who only work in a few professions are eligible, and the government that includes homeopaths in that category is a big deal to us, ”she said.

Dr. Nicholas currently practices at the Jupiter Al Nahda Poly Clinic and the Houston Clinic in Al Barsha and said her entire family was proud and happy with the achievement as her grandfather, mother and brother were all home therapists and her family was a manufacture too had unit of homeoic medicines at home. “I hope that many more will receive this recognition.”

Personal benefits

Dr. Nicholas said she was also excited about the benefits of the ten-year visa. “My children are now over 18 years old. My 22 year old son is studying in the UK. Now I can sponsor him for ten years and I can go home and come back anytime as the UAE allows Golden Visa holders to return from India on regular flights. “

Dr. Devinder Kapoor, a homeopath with Chiron Clinic in Sustainable City, said she felt blessed to be in the United Arab Emirates when she received her golden visa on Sunday.

Dr. Devinder Kapoor

“There are no recurring visa renewal costs. This category is particularly preferred when traveling. So I can go home in an emergency. “

Naturopaths with a Golden Visa are happy that they can also change jobs, as they do not need a specific company visa and can also sponsor their children for a longer period of time.

Homeopathy for Post-COVID Care

“I’ve been here for almost 14 years. I have observed that, especially in the difficult times of the COVID-19 pandemic, people are increasingly looking for complementary and alternative drugs, ”said Dr. Kapoor. She said, “Our system has recently provided efficient treatment for post-COVID complications. Homeopathy is very good for boosting immunity and releasing toxins from the body. Hence, it helps in treating post-COVID complications. “

“The awareness of the effectiveness of homeopathy has increased. It just gets better. We are very grateful to the UAE authorities for this, ”added Dr. Devinder added.