Health Insurance in the United Arab Emirates

Health Insurance in the United Arab Emirates

  • 100% online application

  • Reimbursements in the private sector

  • No advance payment in case of hospitalisation

Do you live in Dubai or Abu Dhabi? If so, you are subject to having mandatory health insurance as required by these two Emirates, but which in turn gives you access to care through their various public and private medical facilities. However, the local coverage is not always sufficient to cope with the often very high cost of healthcare, and so many expats combine it with international health insurance.

Health insurance for expats in the UAE

How does the healthcare system work in the UAE?

There is no social security system as such in the country, but its citizens have free access to its public health facilities. Foreign residents can also seek medical treatment if they have a health card issued by the local ministry, but must still pay their own fees. However, these are lower than those charged by the country's many private health institutions, where patients, whether nationals or expats, have to pay the full cost of their care if they do not have personal insurance. 

In order to balance access to the Emirati health system, Dubai and Abu Dhabi have introduced mandatory health insurance. In the two Emirates, this obligation leans more heavily on employers, who are required to finance private health insurance for all their employees by providing them with basic medical coverage that includes a minimum benefits package set by law (Minimum Health Coverage). 

This employer-sponsored insurance must also cover the dependants of employees working in Abu Dhabi. Although this is not a provision in force in Dubai, it does not relieve the beneficiaries of their insurance obligation, which they must then take out on a personal basis, as is also the case for self-employed persons residing in the UAE.

How to choose health insurance in the UAE?

Whether taken out by the employer or as an individual, health insurance in the UAE must be obtained from an approved local health insurance company.  

The minimum benefits package must cover hospitalisation, emergencies, routine medicine (general practitioner and specialist), maternity, tests, and prescribed exams. Optical and dental coverage is not mandatory

Moreover, there may also be some deductibles (e.g., for hospitalisation, consultations or maternity) as well as waiting periods for treatment of pre-existing conditions. The choice of hospitals can also be limited. 

To overcome the disadvantages of the basic local insurance, many expats in the UAE choose to supplement it with a more comprehensive international health insurance policy.

What is the cost of healthcare in the United Arab Emirates?

Examples of reimbursements with MyHealth International COMFORT in relation to the cost of care in the United Arab Emirates in the private sector*.

  • GP consultation
    • AED 0.00
    • AED 350.00
  • Specialist consultation
    • AED 0.00
    • AED 550.00
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • APRIL International

Care in the United Arab Emirates

Choosing hospitals in the UAE

In both the public and private sectors, the Emirati health system is at the cutting edge of technology and guarantees a quality of care rarely matched elsewhere in the world. 

Public hospitals, which charge the more moderate rates, are therefore very popular; private establishments, on the other hand, provide very fast and responsive care, as well as optimal comfort. 

The official website of the Emirati government provides information to help you choose among the country's institutions, including:

  • Its primary health centres (which can be accessed before referral to a specialist hospital) and the country's 45 public sector hospitals

  • Public and private hospitals in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, listed on a web platform allowing you to book appointments online

  • The various facilities gathered within the country's Healthcare City (located in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah); these are enormous free zones dedicated to medical care and research, concentrating multiple specialities, and providing very high-quality services.

Health facilities


Mediclinic City Hospital

+971 800 1999

Local call rates apply


Clemenceau Medical Centre

+971 800 262392

Local call rates apply


King's College Hospital

+971 4 5199 999

Local call rates apply

Emergency numbers in the United Arab Emirates

  • 999
  • 997
  • 998

Why choose APRIL International

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