Your guide to health insurance in Kuwait
Sitting at the top of the Persian Gulf coast, The State of Kuwait is a small country surrounded by powerful neighbors such as Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Iran. Meanwhile, it is also an oil-rich country with the fourth-highest ratio of expatriates in the world.
If you are moving or traveling to Kuwait, you will surely have many questions concerning their healthcare system, healthcare for expats, and the commonest health threats. This short guide below offers a practical summary of healthcare and insurance in Kuwait, as well as options from health insurance companies for expats dwelling there. Read on to learn more, or click the button below to obtain a no-obligation, free quote.
Public and private healthcare systems in Kuwait
Kuwait’s public healthcare system is run through the Ministry of Health (MoH). As of 2011, the Kuwaiti MoH claims to have the best healthcare network in the Gulf region. The MoH goal is to provide high levels of medical care through government clinics and hospitals free of charge to the Kuwaiti people.
The public healthcare system is comprised of an intricate network of primary, secondary and specialized health centers. Primary healthcare centers offer medical services including general practitioners, maternity care, dentistry, preventive medical care, nursing care, family medicine, and pharmaceuticals. As of 2010, Kuwait had 72 primary health facilities throughout the country. Secondary healthcare is provided through 6 major hospitals: Amiri, Sabah, Adan, Mubarak Al-Kabeer, Farwaniya, and Jahra hospital.
Finally, Kuwait has several specialized medical facilities built to care for specific health problems a person might have. Some of these specialized hospitals include the Obstetrics Hospital, Ibn Sina Hospital for neurosurgery, Razi Hospital for burns, and the Kuwait Cancer Control Center for cancer diagnosis and treatment.
The standard of care provided by Kuwaiti hospitals is considered to be on par with western medical facilities in the United States and Western Europe. With Kuwait’s highly developed healthcare system and small population, medical waiting lists are almost non-existent and everyone usually receives treated within a few days. A majority of the medical staff within hospitals and clinics, including private hospitals, are foreign, although there are some local doctors and nurses within public facilities.
Kuwait’s public healthcare is financed by revenue from oil and provides a number of free medical services for Kuwaiti nationals, and gives the rest at a subsidized cost. This allows public clinics and hospitals to provide medical care at a low cost to residents of Kuwait.
Healthcare for expats living and working in Kuwait
In early 2019, the Kuwait government had imposed a draft law that would establish a mandatory health insurance scheme for expats living and working in Kuwait. In order to service expatriate’s health needs, the local authorities have set up a shareholding company called Dhaman, whose health strategy involves the establishment of three hospitals and a series of basic healthcare clinics according to expats’ demographic distribution.
This new requirement is made to ensure that visitors are financially capable to foot the bill in case of a medical condition or emergency. This is because the costs of private facilities in Kuwait are more expensive than public facilities, and some of them simply do not accept local health insurance as a means of payment. Therefore, travelers and expatriates are advised to purchase travel insurance or international health insurance to make sure they are covered for all eventualities, including evacuation or even medical repatriation to their home countries in case of serious emergencies.
What are the major health threats in Kuwait?
Kuwait’s success within the health industry over the past 15 years has allowed it to eradicate many communicable diseases from within its borders. Major health problems within the country now mainly consist of non-communicable diseases, such as obesity and diabetes.
The hot and dry climate presents several health problems, especially to visitors, such as skin irritation, sunburn, and sunstroke. Expatriates have also experienced respiratory problems due to the concentrations of sand and dust in the air.
How to find the best private health insurance in Kuwait
With extensive years of experience throughout the world, Pacific Prime can assist you with any health insurance needs in Kuwait. Leveraging our close relationships with major insurers over the world, we offer professional advice and free plan comparisons to our clients. No matter what your budget is or what your requirements are, our professional consultants can match you with a policy that best fits you or your group. Our policies can cover a wide range of services with optional benefit packages including outpatient, inpatient, maternity, dental, specialist consultations and many more. Please contact us today for a free consultation.