Located on the Indian Ocean in the Middle East bordering United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, Oman has long prospered off lucrative Indian Ocean trade. During the 18th century Oman was the first Middle Eastern country to sign friendship and trade treaties with the UK. This led to further development in the countries military, political and social arenas, as Oman heavily relied on advisors and investment from the UK.
Despite the UK′s heavy investment in Oman it never became part of the commonwealth as a colony. During the 1970′s Qaboos bin Said al-Said overthrew the restrictive rule of his father, and became the sultan of Oman, he has ruled the country ever since. Qaboos bin Said al-Said has since lead the country to extensive modernization through his openness to foreign investment, and moderate foreign policy, which maintains good relationships with both the rest of the Middle East and the rest of the world.
Oman Medical Insurance News
The sultanate of Oman is the third largest country in the Arabian Peninsula region, following Saudi Arabia and the republic of Yemen. Oman is located on the southeastern corner of the peninsula with an approximate population of around about, 3.41 million people.
Omani political and social power is held exclusively by the sultan. On August 1970 he set a Royal Decree establishing the Ministry of Health for Oman, and set in concrete endorsements for health for all Omani citizens, guaranteeing access to health services free of charge. The Omani health system is based on three levels of health care delivery: primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare. In the short three decades of his rule he has turned the Omani healthcare system right around, from the once backwater health services provided to standards now on par with many other industrialized and developed countries.
Prior to 1970 and the establishment of the Ministry of Health public healthcare in Oman had not been properly set up and attaining healthcare services were hard to find and extremely expensive. There were only 2 hospitals and 9 clinics, with a total of 12 beds between them, servicing the Muscat region, the most populated region of Oman. There were less than 100 people employed in the health industry as a whole, infectious diseases were prevalent amongst the population due to contaminated water supplies and lack of a sewage system and Due to this Oman had a very high child mortality rate.
Since the foundation of the Ministry of health, hospital numbers have increased dramatically pushing down the child mortality rate significantly and increasing the life expectancy of Omani citizens greatly. There is now at least one major hospital for each region of Oman which focuses on providing high quality out patient and in patient services covering various specialist areas. Currently in Oman the Ministry of Health runs 48 hospitals throughout the Omani region. Of these 13 are referral hospitals and an extensive ambulance coverage network has been set up to further insure high quality health services are available for the citizens of Oman.
Oman has been ranked by the World Health Organization as the most efficient health system in the world. This ranking was given taking a number of factors into account including, infant mortality rates and life expectancy in proportion to amount of money spent by the government on health. Oman, who ranked first, used the money spent on most efficiently as they were able to make the most gains in lowering the infant mortality rate and increasing life expectancy.
The morbidity pattern of Oman is currently shifting quite rapidly from communicable diseases that affect developing nations to health problems that are related to and face the modern lifestyle, including diabetes and obesity. Immunization levels have also been high amongst children in recent years with 98% of children being fully immunized against polio, diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough and measles.
Overall Oman has a well rounded healthcare service. As is true with any country in the world, there are some problems inherent in the system; however most people are able to receive the care that they need when they need it, except of course if you happen to be in the desert. The only way to avoid the issues and concerns of any healthcare system in the world is through a quality international health insurance plan. These plans give you the flexibility to go to the doctor or hospital of your choice, meaning that no matter where in the world you may be located, from Australia to the United Kingdom, you will always be able to receive the highest standard of care available.
Located on the Indian Ocean in the Middle East bordering United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, Oman has long prospered off lucrative Indian Ocean trade. During the 18th century Oman was the first Middle Eastern country to sign friendship and trade treaties with the UK. This led to further development in the countries military, political and social arenas, as Oman heavily relied on advisors and investment from the UK. Despite the UK′s heavy investment in Oman it never became part of the commonwealth as a colony. During the 1970′s Qaboos bin Said al-Said overthrew the restrictive rule of his father, and became the sultan of Oman, he has since ruled the country ever since. Qaboos bin Said al-Said has since lead the country to extensive modernization through his openness to foreign investment, and moderate foreign policy, which maintains good relationships with both the rest of the Middle East and the rest of the world.
Whenever you travel to a new country it can be daunting and because of this it is often important to have some background information on your destination. Because of this we have provided a general outline of Oman below. Please be advised that information contained in this page is subject to change without prior warning or knowledge, and as such you should consult an expert for the most accurate details.
Official Name: Sultanate of Oman
Location: Middle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Persian Gulf, between Yemen and UAE
Size: Oman is a total of 212,460 sq km; comparatively this is slightly smaller than the UK.
Climate: Along the coast it is particularly hot and humid with cool breezes coming off the Indian Ocean, however in the center it is arid, hot and very dry all year round.
Population: The population of Oman is 3.4 million people as of July 2008
Life expectancy: Citizens of Oman are expected to live to 74.1 years of age when they are born.
Major illnesses: Northern Oman is not particularly prone to any major diseases; however the southern Salalah Region of south Dhofar is particularly prone to Tuberculosis, Brucellosis and Viral Hepatitis.
Ethnicities: There are a number of ethnicities predominant throughout Oman including Arabs, who form the majority, Baluchi, South Asian (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan etc.) and also a small minority of Africans.
Languages: The official language of Oman is Arabic, however English, Urdu, Baluchi and Indian dialects are also widely used.
Religion: The main religion is Ibadhi Muslim, which accounts for 75% of the religious population. Other religions include, Sunni Muslims, Shi′ia Muslims and Hindus.
Government:The Government of Oman is an absolute monarchy in which all power rests with the sultan.
Head of State: Qaboos Said al-Said is the sultan of Oman.
Economy:The economy of Oman is a middle income economy in which relies heavily on its oil exports. However its oil reserves are in steep decline. Recently this has been offset by high oil prices. As a result of the dwindling oil reserves Oman has been actively pursuing to develop its manufacturing and services industry. In addition Oman is also trying to establish its natural gas industry more, hoping that it will take over when the oil reserves start to dwindle. Oman is actively seeking foreign investment into its economy, in particular its tourism sector and its higher education sector.
GDP: Oman has a GDP purchasing power of $67.4 billion USD.
Oman Travel Tips
Whenever you travel overseas it is often useful to understand the local laws and customs in the destination country, as they can often be very different to your own. Oman′s laws are based on Sharia law, also know as Islamic Law, added with the Sultans own set of laws. To avoid any mix up or confusion with local laws and customs we have provided some travelers tips to assist you in having a more enjoyable holiday.
Please be advised that the information contained on this page is not fully comprehensive and may be liable to change without prior warning; as such you should consult a travel expert or your local embassy prior to departing on your journey.
- In Oman it is illegal not to have some form of official ID on you at any given time. Therefore it is recommended that you carry either your passport, or a photocopy of, or an Omani ID card. Other forms of ID such as overseas driver′s license or overseas ID cards will not be accepted.
- Terrorists over recent times have issued threats related to westerners and western interests, such as compounds, aviation business and oil, based throughout the gulf region.
- It is known by officials that individuals calling into private homes and hotels claiming to be representatives of the Ministry of Health offering vaccines against bird flu for small fees. There is no Ministry of Health bird flu vaccination service and this is a hoax. The "vaccination" is a drug, and victims are robbed while unconscious.
- Visitors with UK, Australian, and American and other driving licenses can currently obtain an Omani license without taking a driving test. This however does not apply automatically to holders of driving licenses issued by the Isle of Man, Channel Islands or Overseas Territories.
- In Oman if you are involved in a car accident and there is damage done to either party or their vehicles or any public property, e.g. road signs, you must wait at the scene and contact the Royal Omani Police (9999) and wait for further instructions. Leaving the scene can result in heavy fines and possible imprisonment.
- When driving outside Muscat at night, be wary as stray camels can sometimes wander across and even sleep on poorly lit roads. The consequence of hitting a camel can be quite serious as these large animals can cause quite a lot of damage to cars that hit them.
- Heavy rainfall can cause sudden and severe flooding to dry riverbeds which may pass over a road. You are advised to take full precautions when driving during heavy rain.
- Local Sharia laws reflect the fact that Oman is a Muslim country. You should respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times and be aware of your actions to ensure that they do not offend other cultures or religious beliefs, especially during the holy month of Ramadan or if you intend to visit religious areas.
- Women, who wear tight-fitting clothes, revealing dresses or shorts, in particular in downtown areas, are likely to attract unwelcome attention. There have been some reported cases of sexual harassment.
- Homosexual behavior is strictly illegal in Oman and those engaging in such behavior will lead to serious consequences.
- The import or use of narcotics at anytime in Oman is strictly prohibited. If prosecuted you are likely to face the death penalty. Soft drugs such as cannabis are treated just as harshly as hard drugs, and there is no difference in the eyes of the law in Oman.