The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is no exception when it comes to providing exemplary service in the field of medical health. With a consistent and strict guarantee of health safety, implementation of advanced technologies and strive for excellent service, it does not come as a surprise, that interest in medically related businesses in the UAE is constantly growing. In quite a competitive environment, especially with new entrepreneurs consecutively stepping into the arena, a key element in creating a business, which stands out, relies vastly on promotions and publicity.
If you are one of those who wish to curate a wider exposure for your company in this particular sector, the following shall provide an essential outline concerning medical advertisements in the UAE – ranging from the application process and other central guidelines, to specific fees tailored to the type of advertisement you shall be releasing.
Medical advertisements are reviewed and approved by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOH), in the Department of Regulation and Licensing and Advertising and even more precisely, the Public Health Policy and Licensing Sector.
The first step on the way to get your medical advertisement approved is to prepare all documents required for application submission. The basic documents include the following:
1) a valid copy of the company’s commercial license,
2) a valid copy of a medical license (for applicable establishments), and
3) a valid copy of the labor card of the person responsible for the health advertisements. The latter is not needed, where the person responsible is the owner or a license partner in the company. In instances where the medical advertisements apply to a group of commercial and medical pharmacies, copies of and a table of details consisting of these pharmacies’ names, licenses (along with the expiry dates) and contact information must be provided.
Aside from these general requirements, there are also additional lists, which pertain to specific types of advertisements, such as printed materials (brochures and fliers, posters and banners, window displays, vehicle displays etc.), broadcast media (radio and television advertisements), other communication platforms (websites, e-advertisements, SMS, direct audio and video advertisements, press releases) and more.
For one, printed materials have certain common requirements needed, such as the following:
1) a colored copy of the proposed design,
2) an Arabic translation of the text in the design, where the language used is neither Arabic nor English (and in which it should be declared by the establishment that the translation accurately matches the original text) and relevant documents to the product being advertised.
In terms of broadcast media, a script containing what is to be said should be shown, as well as information on the sponsorship, program, station and such. A pattern can also be seen with regards to advertisements using direct audio and video and e-advertisements, where a copy of the text (before actual recording for direct audio and video) or a copy of the design/audio/video clip must be presented.
Further exclusive requirements, such as vehicle registration for mobile outdoor advertisements, regulatory documents for websites, agreement document in respect of minors for SMS and many others are provided for on the MOH website. As this article is not a comprehensive list but rather supplies a concept of what to expect in applying, it is still best to visit the official website for the exact index appropriate for each form of advertisement.
It is highly suggested to observe the common guidelines set out by MOH in formulating advertisements. Exaggerated statements, which include claims of a product being the best, having no side effects, having immediate results, etc. must be avoided. The same goes for statements which fully pledge a complete cure to illnesses. Additionally, information which must be included is health educational paragraphs: this simply refers to statements which advise for instance to consult a doctor before use or where symptoms persist, or to exercise and eat healthy for weight loss medications.
An online application is available for ease of submission through the MOH website by creating an account. An e-form for the application is provided therein under Business Services à Medical Advertisements, which shall be filled accordingly by the applicant, then submitted along with attachments of the necessary documents. Afterwards, MOH reviews the said application and states that a response will be accomplished in more or less 1 to 3 working days. Once authorization is received, an approval of payment is issued by MOH and the applicant can then pay online or through the Ministry’s customer service desk. Lastly, the document of approval on the advertisement design given by MOH to the applicant must be printed.
Cabinet Resolution No. 44 was filed by the Ministry of Health and Prevention in 2016, listing the fees attached to advertisements differing by classification of services.
As for the particular service fees, these depend upon factors spanning from whether it shall be a monthly or yearly license to the number of languages, products, activities, accounts and content used in the promotional material.
To give an example, even a non-medical company would have to acquire a license if they choose to generate a health advertisement, and this would cost about AED 600 (six-hundred dirhams) for a month, AED 6000 (six-thousand dirhams) for a year, added to the application fee of AED 100. These fees once more are conditional per language and product. Even call centers for medical establishments warrant a service fee of AED 1000 (one-thousand dirhams) every month. Moreover, as today’s generation is highly involved in social media and various online activities, it only makes sense to safeguard health advertisements on this platform as well. Thus, the list also exhibits the fee for social media accounts or websites by medical, pharmaceutical or commercial establishments, which both apply a charge of about AED 1000 (one-thousand dirhams) per month and AED 3000 (three-thousand dirhams) per year, excluding the application fee per language, account (for social media accounts) and content. These are just a few samples of what to anticipate in the MOH’s broad and detailed list.
As echoed throughout the writing, it is best to consult with the Ministry of Health and Prevention’s official list of requirements and fees pertaining to health advertisements for each unique establishment. However, it is vital to have an overview of what is to come when considering modes of marketing and advertising in this area of expertise, to enable you to begin your business’ production of health advertisements on the right foot.
Business Boutique | UAE-Consultants.com has an expertise in company formations and all business consultancy matters within Dubai and the UAE. We would be happy to assist you with any follow-up queries within our competency. You can contact us via [email protected] or via our office phone no. +971 4 368 48 84.
Prepared by Business Boutique | Published on Oct 5, 2018
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