Segregated healthcare for expatriates in Kuwait

The Health Assurance Hospitals Company (DHAMAN) and Kuwait’s Ministry of Health will offer health insurance for expatriates working in the private sector, starting this year. Most treatment will be in special hospitals and centres in the country, built to cater to expatriates and their families. About two million people will benefit from the insurance system. This may reduce outbound medical travel from the state.

The Kuwait Ministry of Health is coordinating with Dhaman to implement the government-run health insurance scheme in 2020.

The premium for the health insurance cover will be KWD130 (US$428) a year. The cover is for expatriates working in the private sector and their children. The insurance will cover medical tests, X-rays and other treatments. There is a media plan to explain the mechanism of health insurance and treatment to expats.

This will be after the opening of the two Dhaman hospitals built to cater to expatriates and their families. It will also run 12 primary health centres.

The latest to open is Dhaman Initial Health Care Centre in Hawally. Some centres are ready for operation, while others will be completed soon in addition to the two hospitals under construction. The company aims to provide full healthcare to expatriates working in the private sector. About two million people will benefit from the insurance system.

Kuwait has established Dhaman, a shareholding company through the public-private-partnership system, to service expatriate’s health needs. Its health strategy involves building two hospitals and several healthcare clinics according to expats’ demographic distribution throughout Kuwait. It is building hospitals in Ahmadi and Jahra, and the two hospitals are expected to be ready in this year, only serving expatriates. Dhaman hospitals will only provide secondary healthcare, while tertiary healthcare will remain the preserve of Ministry of Health hospitals.

For the Health Ministry to screen expatriate workers before coming to work in Kuwait it has health centres overseas. Dhaman will also run the health insurance scheme for expatriates.

Dhaman, when controlling healthcare and health insurance, will not pay for treatment for expatriates and their families overseas unless its own hospitals are unable to help. This will only be for a very small number of cases.