Expat Exchange
Free MembershipSign In

7 Important Tips about Healthcare for Expats in the UAE

By Betsy Burlingame

Universal Tax Professionals
Universal Tax Professionals

Summary: Expats and people moving to the UAE have lots of questions. Healthcare and health insurance are often on the list. Here are 7 tips about healthcare, health insurance in the UAE, having a baby in the UAE and more.

Expats in the UAE - 7 Important Tips about Healthcare for Expats in the UAE

If you're moving to the UAE, chances are you have a lot of questions about expat life in the UAE. Here are 7 tips about healthcare and health insurance in the UAE. Topics covered include mandatory health insurance, bringing medications into the UAE, the availability of birth control and having a baby there.

Updated Covid-19 Requirements for the UAE

Expats can stay view up-to-date information about Covid-19 travel requirements for the UAE via the U.S. embassy's website for the UAE.

Quality of Medical Care in the UAE

In terms of the quality of healthcare in the UAE, the US State Department wrote, "Basic modern medical care and medicines are available in the principal cities of the UAE, but not necessarily in outlying areas. There are significant variations in quality of care provided, so care should be taken in choosing a health care provider and reputable facility. While most common conditions can be appropriately treated in the UAE, complex medical conditions may be better treated in the United States. Providers may recommend a large number of procedures and tests, some of which may be unnecessary."

The Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi opened in 2015 as part of Abu Dhabi's plan to develop a world-class healthcare sector in the Emirate. Dubai Healthcare City is another new medical center that was built in hopes of attracting medical tourists to Dubai.

Health Insurance for Expats in the UAE

Insurance System for Advancing Healthcare in Dubai (ISAHD) explains that as of 2014 it is mandatory that expats in the Dubai have health insurance. Abu Dhabi enacted similar laws in 2006.

William RussellWilliam Russell
Get Quote

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

William RussellWilliam Russell

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
Get Quote

Having a Baby in the Dubai

The laws in the UAE regarding children of single-mothers or unmarried parents have changed in the last few years. Babies born to unmarried mothers are now entitled to birth certificates.

One expat mom talked about having a baby in Dubai, "My third child was born in Dubai at the American Hospital. The midwives were primarily from Ireland or the UK and would deliver the baby unless there was a complication and the doctor needed to be called in. They were friendly and nice. Many people stay in hospital for 3-5 days before going home. The care was excellent. I wanted my doctor to be present for the birth since that had been my experience with my first two children. I happened to find an OB/GYN who DID make a habit of coming to the hospital for delivery so you need to inquire when interviewing a doctor if he/she does make hospital visits during birthing." When asked what she would do advise nother expat mom preparing to have a baby in the UAE, she said, "Ask if the hospital has an NICU or, if there were complications, what hospital nearby would have an NICU [knowing that your infant would need to be transported to that other hospital]."

Another expat mom explained, "You can choose from the government-run hospitals, such as Al Wasl, which are cheaper than the private hospitals, but many do not allow men into the labour rooms (they are allowed in for final delivery only). Al Wasl has an excellent reputation in terms of quality of healthcare, but is far from providing any frills and luxury. The best and most established private hospitals are Americal Hospital and Welcare Hospital. Be aware that American has a tendency to push women into Caesarians although it provides a very luxurious service complete with champagne dinner for the new parents. Welcare is not quite as luxurious but the care is very good; mainly British/Indian doctors and nurses. You can choose an independent gynae/obstetrician from any clinic, or you can choose one who works from one of the hospitals. The advantage of the latter is that the private hospitals tend to offer 'packages' that include all pre-natal appointments and scans and tests, and 'birth packages' that include the stay in hospital and routine fees, and this works out cheaper than using an independent obstetrician - for him, you have to pay his fees PLUS the hospital fees for giving birth."

William Russell

Learn MoreGet Quote

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

William Russell

Connect

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Is Birth Control available in the UAE?

In a discussion about birth control in the UAE, one newcomer asked: "Has anyone tried to get contraception in Abu Dhabi? What are your experiences? I have read that it is rarely available and often has to be ordered. If you obtained some, what pharmacy did you chose?" Another expat replied, "I was able to get a prescription from my doctor and I purchased mine from the hospital/clinic he is at in Al Ain. I do know of some pharmacists who do reject giving such pills, but I think it depends on where you go. I went to a mission hospital, Oasis Hospital, where many of the doctors and nurses are of the Christian faith. I don't know if that has anything to do with why I was able to get them." Another expat replied, "Birth control pills are readily available without a prescription at any pharmacy (Microgynon, Jasmine are about 35 dh/mo or $10). So are condoms and pregnancy tests. However, IUDs, the morning-after pill, and abortions are not available here. Gynecologists are mostly female and the services are excellent. It's probably a good idea to choose a doctor first and ask her/his advice., rather than try to fill a prescription from another country."

Medical Exam Required for Work and Residence Permits in the UAE

"A full medical exam is required for work or residence permits and includes an HIV/AIDS test. Testing must be performed after arrival; a U.S. HIV/AIDS test is not accepted. U.S. citizens have been detained and deported for testing positive for HIV, active tuberculosis, or hepatitis," states the US Department of State. There are no special vaccination requirements for travel to the UAE; however, travelers are advised to be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

https://refer.william-russell.com/l/ExpatExchang?utm_source=c97b6b9f-d9df-eb11-bacb-000d3abeeeb5&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_term=introducer-expat-exchange&utm_campaign=5e6a0875-d9df-eb11-bacb-000d3abeeeb5&utm_content=3299-MOBILE-art-7-Important-Tips-about-Healthcare-for-Expats-in-the-UAE-hianchor-vrs-B-UAE-5

Hospitals in the UAE

The US Department of State provides a helpful list of hospitals in the UAE. They do not endorse these hospitals in any way.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


Universal Tax Professionals
Universal Tax Professionals

Universal Tax Professionals
Universal Tax Professionals

Comments

femalesurgeonuae
Aug 8, 2019 05:58

Hello Guys, This post has given a lot of information about healthcare in the UAE. There is one hospital which is a private general hospital in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE). Al Zahra Hospital Sheikh Zayed Rd - Dubai - United Arab Emirates Websites: https://www.femalesurgeonuae.com/ This website owned by doctors of al-Zahra. Thank you

William Russell
William Russell

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get Quote

William RussellWilliam Russell

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get Quote

Contribute to UAE Network Contribute
Help others in UAE by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in UAE.

Universal Tax Professionals
Universal Tax Professionals

Copyright 1997-2024 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal