Many people see arranging health insurance in Dubai as quite daunting. I remember realising that I was the one in charge of my own medical cover – and that included knowing what would happen should I ever need to claim. Understanding hospital cover for major injuries was one thing. But what about those every day complaints where I would usually just see a doctor?
While there’s a public health service that’s available to expats, arranging health insurance in Dubai is the best way to ensure you get the level of care you want. In this post I’ll look at this in more detail.
If you’re planning to move to Dubai, you might also want to read our free eBook The New Expat.
Finding the right health insurance
The good news is that arranging health insurance in Dubai is quite straightforward. Many expats arriving in Dubai find that their employer provides their healthcare for them. However, if you’re looking for your own cover it’s very important to do some research first.
All health insurance will cover the major hospitalisations (although fortunately these are rare), including all emergency surgeries. The cost of cover for these kinds of events does vary, so be sure to read the small print carefully before taking out a policy.
When arranging health insurance in Dubai you will be expected to provide a detailed health history and those with any recent major medical events will usually pay considerably more.
The average person is usually just as concerned by ‘day to day’ healthcare issues such as doctor’s visits and dentistry. These may not be covered when arranging health insurance in Dubai, but are often paid for on an individual visit basis.
According to www.expatforum.com an average doctor’s fee is around $60. Prescriptions are paid for privately and separately too, but are for the most part inexpensive. Dentistry is also big business in Dubai and depending on what treatment you need the cost can vary considerably.
Health in Dubai
So what kind of things should you ensure are covered by your health insurance? Some of the most common complaints for expats are respiratory problems caused by the dry dusty air. Heat stroke and dehydration can also be an issue, so be sure to stay well hydrated and out of the strong sun.
Another problem I was surprised to hear about is loneliness and even depression. In a sunshine country like Dubai where poverty is low I didn’t expect this to be such a big issue. But it seems many expats feel homesick and isolated when they move abroad. So it’s a good investment to keep in regular contact with family back home and build a supportive group of local friends.
Medical Services in Dubai
You’ll be pleased to know that Dubai has a truly excellent healthcare system, centered on the American Mission Hospitals and a state of the art ‘Medical City’.
Dubai is generally accepted to offer medical care comparable, if not better, than the UK or US. It’s such an impressive system that it attracts medial professionals from all over the world, so patients are in very safe hands. What’s more, Dubai’s relatively small population of 1.9m means there’s less pressure on the healthcare system than in other countries.
How to find out more
For more on making the move abroad, don’t forget to download our free eBook The New Expat which covers family matters, accommodation issues, financial arrangements, medical considerations and much more.