Don’t gamble with your health, get the right cover at the right price.
Leaving your home country and moving to the UAE might seem a bit daunting at first. Starting a new life in a foreign land has some not-so-fun bits. You will have to find a new job, a new house, get a new driving license and not to mention, a new Expat health insurance in Dubai. Expatriate Health Insurance in Dubai and several other parts of the UAE is mandatory. Every Expat must at least have the basic or essential healthcare cover as specified by DHA, the Dubai Health Authority.
Expat health insurance covers are the insurance covers that are designed specifically to meet the healthcare needs of Expats as well as their dependents in the UAE. The healthcare system of the UAE is one of the best ones in the world with state-of-the-art facilities and medical equipment. However, these exceptional facilities come at a high cost if you do not have proper health insurance cover to help you manage the cost.
Every Expat in the UAE, any emirate whatsoever is eligible to take on an insurance plan if they are either a salaried employee with an organisation or are self-employed. Although, every employer in Dubai is obligated to offer at least an Essential Basic Plan (EBF). This is a plan designed by DHA that contains the basic required healthcare service that every employee must-have. Anyone earning AED 4000 or less per month is eligible for an EBF insurance plan in Dubai. Any Expat earning more than AED 4000 are free to choose a health insurance plan with better benefits.
The non-salaried family members of an Expat can be added as dependents in most group health insurance plans that are offered by corporates in the UAE. Depending on the plan made available to you, you can choose to add up to 4 eligible dependents to your health insurance cover. These 4 people can include 1 spouse and 3 children. If you are planning to buy a personal health insurance plan and want your dependents to be included, you can go for a family health insurance plan as well. The basic requirement for any Expat health insurance plan would require you to be salaried or self-employed with documents supporting your residency in the UAE.
If you are a salaried employee, you will be covered by the group health insurance plan of your organisation automatically. The process of getting the coverage started with a group insurance plan can differ for every firm. Your HR representative will help you through that. Although, you will not need any special documentation for that since you would already have submitted the required ones at the time of your joining.
If you are planning to buy a separate personal Expatriate Health Insurance cover, you can do that in a few simple ways –
Whether you apply for your Expat medical insurance offline or online, the process is going to be pretty much the same. The only difference would be that you will have to call the insurance company to get a quote for the insurance plan in the offline process. The form-filling and submission will also have to be done in person.
Following are the basic documents that you may require when buying a private Expat health insurance in Dubai:
Note that an insurance provider may ask for a few additional documents as per their policies. Make sure you have checked beforehand and have all the documents on hand if you plan to buy the Expat health insurance plan offline.
The public healthcare system of the UAE healthcare system is exceptionally well-maintained and is considered to be one of the best ones around the world. However, it only offers discounted services to the citizens of the UAE which means that you will need an insurance plan as an Expat to cover the expenses. Moreover, being in a foreign country without a long list of relatives or old friends living just a call away can be hard. If you do not have expatriate medical insurance, you will probably end up with a rather unwanted surprise.
Getting the health card to receive some relief with the public healthcare system of the UAE is a good idea, sure. But the process to obtain one can be extremely hard and often confusing. Relying just on the public healthcare of the UAE can still be a bad idea. Having a backup in a new place is one of the first things everyone should do, especially in the case of healthcare.
As a cherry on top of the cake, Expat health insurance in Dubai is generally portable. You can easily shift the main country from the UAE to any other available country with the provider if you decide to move. It can be a new place of work or your home country too. This simply means that you can have multiple benefits wrapped in a single package with Expat medical insurance in Dubai.
There can be ‘n’ number of health insurance plans offered to expatriates depending on the providers. However, there are some basic types that you will find with almost every provider:
The cost of your Expat health insurance in Dubai depends on a variety of factors. If you opt for essential benefits plans, the cost would fall somewhere between AED 600 – AED 700. From here, the higher you go on benefits, the higher the cost will be. Depending on the kind of plan you are buying and the benefit included, good, all-inclusive health insurance can even cost AED 50,000 per annum. Basic private health insurance plans with decent benefits can fall somewhere around AED 5,000 to AED 10,000, depending on the assured insurance sum and the benefits.
The public health insurance available in the UAE for expatriates is not very comprehensive. It only offers an assured benefit of up to AED 150,000 which is further divided into the benefits included in the plan. This makes public healthcare insurance quite insufficient for someone who wants more comprehensive coverage. Private Expat health insurance plans are costlier than the basic healthcare public plan but they offer benefits that make it worthwhile to spend that much money. You not only get better benefits and a wider coverage of services but also international cover and portability features.
If you are in the UAE for work, there is a chance that you could travel to other countries for the same reason too. If you happen to leave the UAE for a significant amount of time, your international Expat insurance will keep covering you in your new country of residence. As a citizen of the country of your work, the chance of travelling for such long periods are low. But as an Expat, these chances are significantly high. Meaning, getting an international Expat insurance plan can work wonders for you as an Expat.
The process of obtaining an Expat health insurance in the UAE is pretty much the same as it is in any other country. The important thing that you should know about is the coverage of the plan that you choose. Keep the following points in mind when choosing a healthcare plan for yourself and your family as an expatriate in the UAE:
Ans: UAE has several top-rated regional and international healthcare providers for Expats. All the providers offer great private expatriate health insurance plans which can be compared to see which suits you the best.
Ans: Getting healthcare in UAE is very easy for Expats. All you need is a full-time job or an established business with a constant income and all the required papers. You can easily get insurance from your employer as a mandatory job-related benefit or you can buy a private expatriate healthcare plan from any of the available providers in the country.
As far as healthcare services are concerned, Expats have to mostly rely on the private healthcare system of the UAE. Public healthcare also caters to Expats but it is mostly for emergencies that too with a UAE health card.
Ans: Yes, Expats need health insurance regardless of the country they are travelling to. Being in a foreign country and stuck with a medical emergency can be very problematic and health insurance can help you with that. On top of that, having a basic health insurance plan is mandatory in the UAE for all Expats.
Ans: The coverage for dependents and family members completely depends on the kind of insurance plan you choose or provided by your employers. Several employers offer dependent-inclusive group insurance to their employees which include 1 spouse and up to 3 children. If you are buying private Expat health insurance in Dubai, a family plan would offer the optimum coverage to your family and dependents.
Ans: If you opt for international Expat insurance in Dubai, you will be covered for the time being of your travels. However, this only includes medical expenses and not travel related covers such as flights and baggage.
Ans: Anyone over the age of 18 years and below the age of 75 years (plus-minus a few years) can buy Expat health insurance in the UAE. The applicant needs to have a constant source of income via a salaried job or business with supporting documents of the same.
Ans: As long as your plan specifies worldwide coverage, you will be covered for all medically necessary treatments and services as well as repatriation expenses and medical evacuation.
Ans: An Expat medical insurance plan can be claimed using any of the two basic methods – cashless or reimbursement. The type of claim you can make will depend on the terms of your plan and the kind of service you are claiming for. For example, treatments taken from network hospitals and medical facilities can be applied for direct cashless claims and out-patient services can be reimbursed later.
Ans: The auto-renew service may not be available with these health insurance plans but you can extend the coverage for as long as you like by renewing at the end of each plan tenure.
Ans: Even though you are covered by your Expat medical insurance plan when you travel abroad, it still doesn’t make it the same as travel insurance. Travel insurance will cover your complete journey starting from the flights, accommodations, baggage and medical expenses, while the health insurance plan only covers medical emergencies.
Ans: A health insurance plan with co-pay, whether for expatriates or citizens, will have a pre-decided amount that is to be paid by the policyholder when they apply for a full expense claim. For example, if your prescription medicine cover has 20% co-pay applicable and you submit a claim with AED 100 as total expenses on the medicines. In this case, the insurance company will only pay AED 80 out of the total AED 100 because AED 20 (20% of the total amount) is to be paid by you as co-pay. Note that, not all Expat medical insurance plans will have co-pay. It depends on the providers and specific plans.
Ans: Every health insurance plan in the UAE is supposed to provide a mandatory cover for pre-existing diseases. Some plans may offer it right from the beginning while others may have a waiting period of 6 months to a year or two.
Ans: Yes, you can easily cancel your expatriate healthcare insurance plan at any time you like.
Ans: Both these terms refer to the same kind of insurance plans and are often used interchangeably as well.