Health Insurace mandatory in Dubai
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Abu Dhabi already has rules in place for mandatory insurance coverage for all citizens and residence visa holders without any exception. Dubai which has a population in excess of 3 million has now made it mandatory for companies to offer Health insurance cover to their citizens and residents. This means, starting next year, immigration may not issue any new or renewal of residence visa without health insurance coverage on the applicant.
The scheme is expected to start implementing from 2014 and end in 2016.
The scheme for health insurance will cover UAE Nationals, Residents and visitors, officials from Dubai Health uthority mentioned. Eisa Al Maidoor, speaking while releasing the law effective 26th November 2013 mentioned that “The law is fundamental to ensure smooth delivery of basic health insurance to everyone living in the emirate, wjicj ,eams over thre million people, which includes nationals(Emiratis) and residents with Dubai visas.”
Mnay of us are lucky to have our companies already covering our health insurance expenses. However, many blue collar workers are not covered by their employers in Dubai and this law is meant to provide atleast some kind of health insurance benefits to them.
The existing health cards of Emiratis issued by DHA will be replaced with the new health insurance cards that provide for health care services and preventive care.
Health insurance packages will soon be made available to all employers in Dubai. The basic package is set to cost AED 600 per annum and this will provide basic health services.
1. UAE Nationals
2. Residents (with residence visa)
3. Visitors (on visit visa or tourist visa)
Whose responsibility is it to provide the health insurance coverage:
- For UAE Nationals, government will be responsible based on the health-funding policy and regulations issued by DHA.
- Employers will be responsible for their employees, based on current health insurance policy and the benefits shall not be less than those of the essential benefit package.
- The sponsors, for theor sponsored individuals (spouse, children et), who do not work for an employer; and the benefits shall not be less than those of the essential benefit package.
- People on visit visa: DHA will designate a party in collaboration with relevant entities.
Responsibility of Employers:
- Employers are responsible to enroll their employees in the mandatory health insurance scheme based on their current health insurance policy, and in accordance with the law and regulations.
- Employers are supposed to bear the cost of health insurance coverage and this should not be deducted from employees’s salary.
- Employers will be required to ensure the validity of the health insurance coverage throughout the period of their employment.
- In case of the absense of health insurance coverage, Employers are required to ebar all the costs of health care and emergency services.
- Employers are rquired to provide health insurance card to their employees.
- Employers are rquired to submit proof of health insurance coverage when applying for new or renewal of residence visas for their employees.
- Any other responsibilities assigned by DHA as issued in the regulations.
The new law regarding the health insurance coverage is applicable in the entire emirate of Dubai including the Private development areas, Free zones. The articles of the law are applicable to any and all the the below:
- Healthcare providers
- Health insurance companies
- Third party Administrators
- Health insurance brokers
- All/Any other individual or legal person decided by the Executive Council, based on DHA’s recommendations.
Who will benefit from this health insurance coverage scheme?
Everyone stands to gain from this. This is a very good move by DHA to bring every resident within the purview of this health insurance coverage law. Employees will have access to better health care under this coverage.