Support and Services for Senior Citizens in UAE

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As societies evolve, so do our responsibilities towards those who have contributed significantly to our communities. In the UAE, the government, recognising the value and importance of senior citizens — often referred to as Senior Emiratis who are aged 60 and above — continues to bring several measures to provide facilities and necessary assistance to such individuals.

In this article, we will explore the various benefits and services provided to senior citizens in the UAE, with a focus on online resources that make accessing these services more convenient.

Defining Senior Emiratis

The UAE government, under the National Policy for Senior Emiratis, designates individuals aged 60 and above as ‘Senior Emiratis’. This term reflects the nation's deep respect and recognition of their experience and commitment towards the UAE.

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Rights and Protections

The Federal Law No. 9 of 2019 on the Rights of Senior Emiratis defines the rights and protections afforded to Senior Emiratis, ensuring their well-being and quality of life.

Some key rights guaranteed by this law include:

  • The Right to Independence and Privacy: Senior Emiratis have the right to lead independent lives and maintain their privacy.
  • Protection from Violence and Abuse: The law safeguards Senior Emiratis from any form of violence or abuse.
  • Access to an Enabling Environment: It ensures access to housing, education, and work opportunities.
  • Social Care: This includes provisions for social clubs and elderly community centres, fostering a sense of belonging and community.
  • Medical Care: Senior Emiratis are entitled to preventive health services, medical insurance, mobile nursing units, and supportive medical devices.
  • Confidentiality of Information: Personal details of senior citizens are kept confidential.
  • Preferential Treatment: Senior Emiratis receive preferential treatment in government transactions, facilities, social aid, and medical services.

The law also imposes penalties, including jail terms and fines, on those who neglect their duties towards Senior Emiratis or violate their rights within elderly care institutions.

The above plans and premiums are for AED 1,000,000 Sum insured for 1 Adult of 30 Years for Dubai city.

The National Policy for Senior Emiratis

The UAE's National Policy for Senior Emiratis revolves around an integrated care system that aims to keep seniors active and provide them easy access to essential government services. This policy encompasses seven pillars as defined below -

  • Healthcare: Ensuring access to quality healthcare services
  • Community Involvement and Active Life: Encouraging seniors to participate actively in community life
  • Effective Civic Participation: Facilitating their participation in civic activities
  • Infrastructure and Transportation: Focusing on accessible infrastructure and transportation options
  • Financial Stability: Addressing financial requirements and stability in their retirement years
  • Safety and Security: Ensuring their safety and security
  • Quality of Future Life: Enhancing their overall quality of life in the later years

Social Assistance

As per Federal Law No. 2 of 2001, senior citizens who reside in the UAE are entitled to monthly assistance, subject to the terms specified in existing laws. This assistance helps alleviate the financial burdens of Senior Emiratis and supports a comfortable and dignified life for them.

Health and Rehabilitation

Healthcare and rehabilitation services play a vital role in the well-being of senior citizens. The UAE government offers programs and services designed to address the unique health and rehabilitation requirements of Senior Emiratis, ensuring that they maintain their physical and mental health as they age gracefully.

Retirement Homes and Care Centers

The UAE provides retirement homes, often referred to as elderly care centres, under the Ministry of Community Development. These centres offer comprehensive care, including primary healthcare, social support, psychological counselling, and physical therapy for Senior Emiratis. The primary goal of these facilities is to provide a comfortable and nurturing environment for seniors to enjoy their retirement years.

Pension and End-of-Service Benefits

Pension schemes and end-of-service benefits are integral components of financial support for Senior Emiratis. These benefits provide financial stability during retirement and help Senior Emiratis maintain their quality of life.

Transport and Parking Facilities

Senior citizens — both Emiratis and expatriates above the age of 60 — get discounts on public transport In Dubai. Emiratis aged 60 and above, who also have disabilities, can get the additional benefit of free parking in public areas. These measures ensure that seniors have access to safe, affordable, and accessible transportation options, enhancing their mobility and independence.

Online Services for Senior Emiratis

To make the above-mentioned benefits and services more accessible to Senior Emiratis, the UAE government has introduced various user-friendly online resources. These websites and online services prioritise simplicity and ease of use.

Some of the features that make these platforms senior-friendly include -

  • Text Size Adjustment: The option to increase the size of text ensures that seniors with visual impairments can easily navigate the content.
  • Text-to-Speech Facility: This feature assists those with reading difficulties by converting text into spoken words.
  • Vivid Colors: The use of vivid colours enhances readability and engagement for older users.
  • ALT Text: Providing alternative text for images ensures that seniors with visual impairments can understand the content through screen-reading software.

Accessing Services Online

Here are some of the online services available for Senior Emiratis -

  • Registering Senior Emiratis in Government Elderly Care Centers: The Ministry of Community Development offers online registration services for Senior Emiratis interested in receiving care at government elderly care centres.
  • Senior Citizens Services: The Community Development Authority offers an array of services for senior citizens on its website.
  • Applying for Home Care Services: Senior Emiratis can apply for the government home care program through the Ministry of Community Development's online portal. This service is also accessible at the Customers' Happiness Centre for Senior Emiratis in Ajman.
  • Registering for the 'Home Care' Program: The official portal of the Ajman Government allows you to register an elderly person in the 'home care' program.
  • Public Transportation Discounts: The official RTA site of Dubai provides online information about discounts on public transportation for senior citizens, making it easier for them to access affordable transportation.
  • Parking Benefits: Information on the benefits of free parking for Emiratis aged 60 and above with disabilities is available online, helping seniors navigate parking regulations.

The UAE government’s commitment to the well-being of its senior citizens is well-evident through a comprehensive range of services and benefits. By providing user-friendly online resources, the government makes it easier for Senior Emiratis to access these services and lead fulfilling lives in their golden years. These initiatives not only honour the contributions of senior citizens but also reflect the nation's dedication to fostering a caring and inclusive society for all its residents.

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