Health insurance: Dubai expats complain about limited coverage for dependants

Published on Feb 07 2017 - - Gulf - -

Dubai: Expatriates on Dubai residence visas living in Sharjah and the Northern Emirates have discovered that the mandatory health care package for dependants has limited, or no coverage in those emirates.
Of the nine companies listed by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) as providing Essential Basic Packages for expatriates earning less than Dh4,000 and minor dependants, at least two do not have coverage in Sharjah and the Northern Emirates while most of the others have very limited coverage in terms of clinics and hospitals.
Take the example of Ahmad, who bought Takaful Emarat insurance for his minor son. When he took the boy for consultation in Sharjah he discovered that the insurance for which he paid Dh650 covered only emergency consultation. “It was frustrating as when a minor is ill I am not really going to brave the Sharjah-Dubai traffic to get him to a doctor. What is the use of this coverage Dubai visa holders living in Sharjah?” he asked.
A call centre employee of Takaful Emarat confirmed that their insurance cover for dependants costs Dh650 for a minor, Dh1,750 for a married woman and Dh2,500 for people above the age of 60. None of these, she said, had coverage in Sharjah. She offered no explanation for why the company did not cover clinics in Sharjah and the Northern Emirates.
Similarly, Ras Al Khaimah Insurance company’s option in the Essential Basic Package category costs Dh588 and has coverage only in Dubai with a Dh150,000 annual limit, upto Dh1,500 for medicines annually with 30 per cent co-insurance and 20 per cent co-insurance in case of out-patient consultation.

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