What is Health Insurance?
Health insurance is a kind of contract between you and your insurance provider where you a pay a certain amount of money to your insurance provider as premiums. In return, your insurance provider takes care of your medical expenses incurred in hospitalization. Based on the type of health coverage, the insured person either pay and get reimbursed by the insurance company, or the insurance company pays directly to the hospital.
Importance of Health Insurance
Health insurance enables you to protect you and your family against medical expenses/hospitalization caused due to illness or accident. A health insurance policy covers you and your family’s consultation fees, diagnostic tests, nursing care, surgeries, hospital accommodation etc. It also pays for your regular medical check-ups.
Key Features and Benefits of Health Insurance
Health insurance comes with a number of attractive features and benefits which include:
- Health insurance pays for your hospitalization caused due to illness and accidents.
- Provides hospital cash.
- Get cover for hospitalizations caused due to maternity for stipulated period of time.
- You can purchase both single and family floater plan. A family floater plan covers your whole family.
- Health insurance policies enable you to include you children under it and provide cover for sickness and accident related medical cost.
- You can renew your health insurance policies. You need to renew your policy your policy within a particular period stated by the insurance provider.
- Offers group health insurances plans.
- You can also enjoy certain portability benefits that enable to you to switch from one policy to another.
- Premiums rates are affordable and vary based on factors like your age, sum assured, policy tenure etc.
- Certain pre-existing diseases are not covered.
- Offers cover for critical illness.
- Get worldwide coverage.
- Easy documentation and fast processing.
- Offers free look period of 30 days.
- Get immediate sum assured payouts.
- Health insurance policies can be availed by both UAE nationals and non-UAE individuals.
- Covers in patient hospitalization expenses.
- Some policies cover the cost of drugs and medicines.
- Provides cover for emergency ambulance services.
- Also, get cover for expenses related to organ transplant.
- Provides cover for ambulance cost.
- Get cover for dental injuries caused by accident.
Although health insurance policies cover a major portion of medical cost incurred in hospitalization and treatment, it does not cover certain things. The exclusions include – medical conditions caused by illegal behaviour, certain pre-existing diseases, self-inflicted injuries, cost incurred in dental and optical treatments, medical condition caused by hazardous activities, injury caused by professional sports etc. Also, medical situation caused by terrorism, conflict, war, natural disasters are not covered under health insurance in UAE.
How to make a claim?
You can claim your health insurance by contacting your insurance provider. You can contact them via phone or email. As per your request, the company representative will get in touch with you and initiate the claim process. Also, you can make your health insurance claim online. To make a claim online, you need to validate yourself by providing your policy no, membership no, phone number, and date of birth and any other information required by the online page. Upon successful validation and submission of complete application form supported by necessary documents, your claim will be settled within a maximum of 15 working days.
Buy Health Insurance Online
You can buy health insurance policies online by visiting the website of your health insurance provider. These days, almost all insurance companies provide the provision of buying health insurance online. You can also renew them online.
How to choose the best Health Insurance
In order to choose the best health insurance in UAE, you need to study the insurance market and find out the various insurance providers that provide health insurance at competitive rates. Get quotes from these insurance providers and compare their premium rates and services. Then based on your requirements, you can choose a health insurance cover for you and your family.
Top Health Insurance providers in UAE:
Some of the top health insurance providers in UAE include:
CBD offers CritiCare health insurance policy. The policy offers lump sum coverage for 37 critical illness and provides worldwide coverage.
Emirates NBD offers health insurance plans like International Term Assurance and Futura Protection Plan. These plans also serve as savings plans. Both the plans are issued and underwritten by Zurich International Life.
FGB (First Gulf Bank) offers three major health insurance plans which include - Diabetes Care, Critical Illness and Well Woman Plan.
Mashreq Bank offers health insurance plans in association with Met Life. The plans are issued by Metlife. Mashreq Bank offers CritiCare Insurance to protect you and your family from increased medical cost. It is a protection plus savings plan.
Citibank UAE offers health insurance plans like Critical illness Plan, Income Protection Plan, Hospital Care etc., to help you secure you and your family against medical expenses.
Frequently Asked Questions - FAQs
Why do I need Health Insurance?
Does health insurance provide cover against organ transplant related expenses?
Can I purchase my health insurance policy online?
Will my health insurance policy cover my pre-existing diseases?
Can I get health insurance cover for my dental injury?
Does Mashreq Bank offer its health insurance plans directly?
How many critical illnesses are covered by CBD CritiCare?
Can I get worldwide coverage with my health insurance policy?
Do I need to go through medical screening before purchasing any health insurance plan?
How will a health insurance help me?
What medical expenses are covered by a health insurance?
Will I be covered for the existing illnesses?
Are there any conditions that may not be covered in a health insurance?
Do all hospitals accept health insurance policy-holders?
Is my health insurance valid in countries other than where I reside?
You need health insurance to protect you and your family against high and unexpected medical cost.
Yes, many health insurance policies provide cover against organ transplant related expenses.
Yes, you can purchase your health insurance policy online.
No, your health insurance policy will not cover your pre-existing diseases.
Normally, health insurance does provide cover for dental injury unless it is caused by accident.
No, Mashreq Bank’s health insurance plans are underwritten and issued by MetLife.
CBD CritiCare covers 37 critical illnesses under it.
Yes, you can get worldwide coverage with health insurance plans like CBD CritiCare.
Yes, some health insurance providers demand medical screening on your part before issuing you a policy. However, it is subject to your age and vary from one insurance provider to another.
A health insurance will offer cover against many kinds of illnesses and medical expenses. You can also select from several clinics and hospitals, specialists and doctors, and the time of treatment. You will also get private treatment at the hospitals that are partners with your insurance provider.
A health insurance covers hospitalisation charges for the medical conditions that you have chosen in your policy. This includes sudden or new illnesses too. Depending on the policy, you would be covered for complete or partial payment of hospital expenses.
Existing illnesses are not usually covered under a health insurance. Before applying for the policy you need to declare your existing illnesses. You may also have to get certified on your existing health problems by a medical practitioner. However, some group policies offer coverage for existing illnesses. Check with your insurance provider for further clarifications.
Treatment from some specialists that are not part of the pure medicine discipline, may not be covered by certain insurance providers. You may have to get referral to these specialists from a certified medical practitioner who falls under the insurance cover. It is advisable to check with your insurer before claiming treatment charges on psychological, chiropractic or dental problems. Physiotherapy and maternity expenses are also sometimes not covered.
No. You need to check with your insurance company on which hospitals or specialist clinics are partnered with it. You will be able to get the benefits of the policy only if you are hospitalised with the partner institutions of your insurer.
This depends on the policy area you have chosen. If you have selected a GCC coverage plan, then your health insurance will be valid in all member countries of the GCC. You may also be able to choose worldwide coverage including United States of America, Canada and the Caribbean, or worldwide coverage excluding the North American countries, or coverage for European nations under Schengen Visa.
News about Health Insurance in the UAE
Only a few UAE women are covered for critical illnesses
According to the recent YouGov survey which was commissioned by Friends Provident International, only a few women in the UAE have critical illness cover. Only 18% of the female respondents had critical illness insurance when compared to 23% of male respondents. The main reason for the female respondents for not having a critical illness cover is that they were not familiar with the concept of the critical illness insurance. The mandatory health insurance is only designed to cover medical expenses and women must consider the impact on their family if they were to contract a serious illness.
20th October 2016
Dubai insurance cards to be replaced by Emirates IDs
Now the Dubai residents can replace their health insurance cards with their Emirates ID card by the first quarter of 2017. A deadline has been set for the insurance companies to integrate the insurance card details to the Emirates ID card. The customers will need not carry their insurance cards and will only need to swipe the cards and the details of the insurance will be shown. The insurance companies on the other hand will provide insurance cards to those who wish to have one. But, they will have to link the scheme details to the Emirates ID card.
17th October 2016
Mandatory health insurance set for the small companies in Dubai
Within weeks the health insurance cover will be linked to the residency visa for the small companies in Dubai. There are companies with less than 100 employees and there are 135,000 in the emirate that are in the final group of employers who have to adopt the mandatory health insurance for the employees. While renewing the visas, the companies should present the employee's health insurance certificate along with the other required documents. The health funding director at DHA, Dr. Haidar said that a new healthy behaviour incentive programme will be launching soon that will offer incentive to the insured people who are living a healthy lifestyle that reduces the risk of diseases. New systems are put in place to avoid health insurance abuse. Currently, about 85% of people in Dubai have health insurance.
05th October 2016
Inadequate insurance cover for breast cancer patients in the UAE
Women in the UAE who are being treated for breast cancer are having to pay thousands of dirhams as their health insurance cover is inadequate. Patients need at least Dh1 million a year to cover for any form of cancer. But, the basic plan covers Dh150,000 in Dubai and Dh250,000 in Abu Dhabi. Since the basic plan premiums are low, the high cost of cancer treatment cannot be covered. The best measure is for women to lead a healthy lifestyle and take a health insurance that can cover any high cost even if it means paying higher premium.
04th October 2016
UAE National Health Insurer to stop covering for vitamin D deficiency tests
The National Health Insurer has stopped covering test for vitamin D deficiency. This means that the people suffering from vitamin D deficiency will go without treatment. A specialist at NMC Specialty Hospital, Abu Dhabi said that most patients who need the test could not afford it. The abuse of insurance by health professionals and patients stopped the coverage. Some insurances used to cover for supplements required for vitamin D deficiency. Those who have a precondition that requires them to take the supplements will be covered for. The high cost of treatment and tests has deterred the people from seeking the diagnosis.
01st September 2016
Expats workers in the UAE may face rising health insurance cost
With health insurance cover made mandatory in the Middle East, expats workers living in the UAE are expecting rising health insurance cost. Health insurance has been made mandatory in Dubai by the Health Authority in three stages beginning with 2014. Going forward, the UAE residents, expats and their dependents should have adequate health insurance cover in the UAE.
However, the Health Authority in Abu Dhabi recently announced that workers aged 40 and above who have availed healthcare under the Abu Dhabi Basic Plan would get relaxation up to 50% on their health insurance premiums.
Although the full implications of these changes are yet to be know, expats in the UAE believe that they would end up paying higher cost. It is expected that companies and sponsors may pass the extra cost to customers. In the UAE, the major portion of expat health insurance cover is usually provided by companies.
12th August 2016
Insurance providers have failed in providing cards due to huge backlog of applications
June 30th was the deadline to apply for mandatory health insurance for workers. Though the employers have complied with this, they are yet to get insurance cards. Most of the insurance companies have failed to process with the paperwork and are trying to clear the backlog. Dependants and domestic workers will get extended insurance deadline till the end of the year. The companies have filled for the paperwork before the deadline but they are yet to receive proof of insurance although payments have been realised. The process of issuing the insurance cards have slowed down because of lack of process knowledge, availability of trained executives and backlog of applications. The workers are suffering as they have to pay for their treatment in full. Some generous employers are offering to reimburse the amount of the bill for the time-being.
09th August 2016
UAE Government to make health insurance mandatory for expats
The Government of UAE has decided to make health insurance mandatory and impose fees for health care services offered to expats who visit the country for various reasons. According to Khalil Al-Saleh, the proposal makes sense and it would help reduce pressure on government hospitals and prevent medicine wastage. By imposing comprehensive health insurance policy on expats, the UAE government will be able to ensure better medical treatment and preserve public funds.
29th July 2016
Lack of awareness on health insurance cost among the UAE residents
Majority of the UAE residents are not aware of the cost involved in health care insurance - a recent survey reveals. According to the survey conducted by YouGovin April, 84% of the respondents underrate the prevailing medical inflammation and 51% of the respondents don't know about the cost involved in medical insurance. In the UAE, the high level of inflation is the major concern for employers as it constitutes a large portion of the total cost of employee recruitment.
28th July 2016
Health insurance coverage for alternative treatment
The residents of Dubai ask for better health insurance coverage for alternative treatments. Only a few insurance providers provide cover for alternative treatments. Although, some companies have started offering coverage for alternative treatments, this is at the cost of paying higher premiums. Given that allopathy has a number of side-effects, the demand for alternative medicine has gone up. Over the last 25 years, there has been a growing demand for alternative medication such as acupuncture, acupressure, reflexology and therapeutic massages.
28th July 2016