The global financial crisis has hit healthcare hard in Dubai, putting expatriate employees at risk of not being covered by a medical plan in the event of needing hospital treatment, an expert claims.
Speaking to The National, Dr Bilal Hashim, a manager at a healthcare centre in Jebel Ali, noted that many businesses in the emirate have viewed health insurance as a luxury so have cut back on it.
“There are definitely fewer companies offering insurance to their employees,” Dr Hashim told the paper.
“A lot of the companies have put more restrictions on the employees and will only cover certain things,” he added.
“For example, some companies will not pay more than Dh20 (£3.20) for medication, or their workers have to get approval from [them] before having treatment.”
Dr Zarqa Taimur also spoke to the newspaper about expensive medical care.
“A trip to a doctor can cost someone Dh50, plus the cost of investigations and medications. It can come to a minimum of Dh200. This is not feasible for someone who earns less than Dh800 a month,” she noted.
People moving abroad could consider taking out expatriate healthcare to help reduce expensive medical bills.