How to Do Medical Fitness Test and Health Insurance in UAE

Now that we discussed what the process of resident visa application and visa issuance looks like, let’s have a closer look at medical fitness test and health insurance. You might have been surprised to learn that we dedicated a whole chapter to this subject, but you will soon understand why.



As you have learnt already, medical fitness test and health insurance are required at the final stage, when you need to submit all documents for resident visa stamping. We have mentioned in the previous chapter that medical fitness test can be done in any authorized Medical Fitness Center and we remind you that the list of Medical Fitness Centers can be found online on the web-sites of health authorities, such as, for example, Dubai Health Authority (DHA) for Dubai residents. If you are applying for your resident visa in Abu Dhabi, you will be requested to do your medical test in Abu Dhabi. Residents of all other emirates (Dubai, Ajman, Fujairah etc.) can do their medical tests in Dubai. Future residents of Northern emirates can currently do their medical tests in two (2) locations: Al Baraha and Karama Medical Fitness Centers, while Dubai residents can choose almost any of the medical fitness centers in Dubai. If you want to be sure that you have picked the right location, simply go to Karama Medical Fitness Center.


When applying for your medical test, you will need to decide, how quickly you would like to get medical test results and receive Medical Certificate. Remember? You need to submit it for visa stamping. The cost of medical fitness test varies from AED 270 for regular to AED 750 or AED 850 for VIP test. Results of regular medical test are released within a week and VIP results can be collected on the same day, if medical is completed early in the morning.


It is recently that local authorities started upgrading the medical test system. Now, some medical fitness centers, Karama Medical Center among the first, started issuing Medical Certificates electronically. In other words, you no longer need to come back to Medical Fitness Center to get the certificate and you do not need to wait for it to be couriered. Instead you receive an electronic certificate right in your email box. The plan is to make all medical fitness centers work more efficiently by emailing test results, instead of spending time and efforts on couriering them.


If you did not go through medical test in the UAE before, you may be wondering, what this process involves. Medical fitness test consists of two parts: a blood test and a chest X-ray. Tests screen you for various diseases, such as, HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis B, Leprosy, Syphilis and Tuberculosis. As of 2016, tests for hepatitis C no longer exist and visa screening and deportation for hepatitis B only applies to certain professions, according to the local sources. Now only six categories of expatriates having human-to-human interactions are tested for Hepatitis B: nannies, housemaids, and nursery workers; hairdressing salon workers; beauty center workers; health club workers. Once Medical Certificate is issued and it specifies that you are FIT, you submit the certificate along with all other documents for resident visa stamping.


It happens sometimes that your medical results are not issued as quickly as requested. For example, you opted for a VIP test and expected to receive medical certificate on the same day, however, nothing was sent to you for 2 days in a row. You can always follow up, but the reason can be, that your blood sample did not allow to clearly understand that you were free of infectious diseases or your X-ray also caused some confusion. In case of X-ray, it is typical, when you are a heavy smoker. Then you are invited to re-take X-ray. In case with blood test, it may happen that you take some medicine, which causes some changes in your blood. In this case scenario, blood sample is usually sent for further testing in a laboratory. As such, do not worry, if you do not receive your results right away, as it may be not as bad, as you pictured it yourself.


Now let us share with you some important information. In 2011 special procedures were put into place for those applying for UAE resident visas for the first time and coming from such countries as Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Later India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Nepal, Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia were added to the list. If you are from any of the stated countries, you would be requested to do a health screening test at your home country in specific Health centers certified by GCC first. Please note that the rule applies both to investors and employees. Then once you enter the UAE, you will be again retested in UAE Medical Fitness Center. The good news is that you do not need to undergo pre-screening in your home country again, if you already did it before and it is not your first UAE resident visa.


In the previous chapters we also mentioned that resident visa is issued for investors for a maximum of 3 years. After it expires, you will need to undergo a renewal process and you will be taking medical fitness test again. As such, each time you will be renewing your resident visa or applying for a new one, you will be taking a medical fitness test.


Now I suggest we discuss medical insurance requirement. You may know it or may not, but emirates Abu Dhabi and Dubai made it mandatory for all UAE residents to have a medical insurance. While Abu Dhabi implemented the requirement earlier, Dubai was implementing strategy in stages and made it absolutely mandatory as of 2017. As such, today it is not possible in Dubai or Abu Dhabi to get resident visa stamped, unless respective insurance certificate is provided. Additionally, if your company sponsors employees or you are sponsoring your family, you need to take care of medical insurance for them too. If you are applying for resident visa in one of the Northern emirates, no medical insurance certificate is currently required for resident visa stamping.


The most popular question we receive with respect to medical insurance is “what is the annual cost of medical insurance per person”? First of all, let’s agree that there are both state insurance providers in the UAE, as well as well-known international insurance service providers. If you are looking for a very good coverage worldwide, including dental and optical, the fee range would be very broad: from approximately AED 7,000 to AED 25,000 per year and much more, depending on the age, gender and other factors. However, if you are fit and you are interested in a very basic coverage just to allow for documents submission for resident visa stamping, state insurance providers shall be preferred. Their basic medical insurance coverage regardless of age, would cost you in the range of AED 2,500 and AED 3,700 per year. You can always approach an insurance broker, who will be able to compare for you several options from various insurance providers.


Now that you know all the aspects, associated with medical test and medical insurance, we are ready to provide you with more information on such document, as Emirates ID, in the following chapter.  


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 Disclaimer: Business Boutique is not affiliated with any particular government or legal entity. Business Boutique does not give professional legal advice nor any other professional advice subject to a public office in the government. This article merely sets out a simple and basic idea as to the reasons of Dubai freezone company setup and Dubai free zone company formation cost. Business Boutique in no way holds nor imposes any official governmental or legal authority and the article herein is only to be taken as a guide. All further governmental or legal issues should be addressed to the corresponding authorities.

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