Tuesday 10th May 2011

The Ministry of Health in Dubai has announced plans to introduce new medical check-up requirements for individuals who are considering moving to Dubai.

When implemented, the new rules will require that individuals from specified countries will be mandated to complete a health check at home before traveling to the United Arab Emirates. The individual will be required to produce a negative test certificate for HIV/Aids, syphilis and pulmonary TB. A pregnancy test will also be performed for women intending to work in the UAE as a housemaid or a nanny. Upon arrival in the UAE expats will undergo further tests to confirm the initial tests before being provided with a residence visa.

Dr Mahmoud Fikri, Assistant Undersecretary of the MoH, announced the changes yesterday, arguing that the current system is inefficient: “The new regulation on getting medical fitness certificate for all new expatriates aims to prevent the spread of communicable diseases and reduce the financial burden of managing expatriates affected by contagious diseases,” he said.

Fikri revealed that 21% of expatriates admitted from Asian countries in 2009 suffered from tuberculosis, concluding, "of late it has been noticed that the rates of contagious diseases increased among some categories coming from some countries in which there are higher rates of these contagious diseases.

“The MoH is currently coordinating with the health authorities in Dubai and Abu Dhabi to carry out inspection visits at the visa-medical test facilities in Asian countries to ensure accuracy, safety and reliability of the examinations conducted at such centres.”

“As cases of contagious diseases are mainly reported among the Asian workers, the UAE will also seek implementing scientific methods to transfer the tests results and other health information directly to the UAE health authorities from the workers’ home countries,” he concluded.

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