Health & Protection in Qatar



Single expats who are moving to a different country often think that they do not need insurance. First, they do not have any kids as dependents, and secondly, their savings are enough to shoulder the expenses in case they would need medical attention. Even those relocating with their family often fall to this same line of thinking: healthcare is not an immediate need compared to housing, education, transportation and food. But the truth is, access to health care is just as important as your other necessities. It might not be tangible compared to your other investments or properties, but it is often worth the amount you pay. Let us give you some information on how you can secure your protection in Qatar.

Getting Insurance

Before flying to the emirate, you should ensure that medical insurance is included in your relocation contract. A sponsor or employer should have this type of benefit that will cover expats' health care needs while working abroad. Discuss internally with your employer (be it your HR, your direct manager, or your colleagues in the Qatar office)

Another thing that you need to check is that your company should be on the list of accredited insurers by the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority, who oversees the operation of all brokers in the country. If you deem that your employer is not complying with the agreement in your policy, you can contact the firm and file a complaint here.

Aside from an expats’ typical coverage from their employers, there are also many private health care providers in Qatar that are strongly supported by the local government. Various international and local brokers offer different types of policies, which make the choosing part a bit hard since everyone promises to secure and protect your well being. It will help you to ask fellow expats for referrals or talk to several insurers to widen your choices. After hearing what the companies have to say, it’ll be easier for you to select which one will best provide your needs. You can consider an international broker such as CIGNA Global who specialises in providing healthcare for expats or a local company called Al Khaleej Takaful Group which is considered as the most prominent provider of general insurance/reinsurance in Qatar since 1978.

Importance of Insurance

There are no specific vaccinations required for foreign nationals entering Qatar, but it strongly advised that you get vaccinated against rabies especially if you will be working or spending time near animals. Other recommended vaccinations are to fight Hepatitis B and Aids, which are acquired from unsanitary sharing of needles or unprotected sex. You should also refrain from drinking tap water or boil it first because waterborne diseases are prevalent in Qatar.

Qatar is a safe country to be where women can walk the streets at night without encountering any violence or harm. However, there are still some health risks, like those stated above, that an expat should be aware. But by being knowledgeable and having the right health insurance, there is a high possibility that you will be able to minimise the chances of getting ill.

Local Insurance in Qatar

The public health care scheme in Qatar is under the supervision of a non-profit organisation called Hamad Medical Corporation who provides free treatment for all locals (Qataris) and subsidised services for expats. The country also prides itself on having world class hospitals such as Hamad General Hospital, Hamad Medical City and Al Khor General Hospital. Skilled doctors man all of these public facilities together with other health care professionals and accommodating staff. As an expat, you must apply for a health card which will allow you to take advantage of the state-funded health care and receive subsidised rates. You will also be pleased to know that the country has a very reliable emergency response team that you can reach by dialling 999.

Expats in Qatar should strongly consider getting an international insurance, if not provided directly by the employer. Though there are reliable local brokers who are very familiar with the local products in Qatar, you can seek advice directly from international insurances are designed to meet the specific needs of foreign nationals abroad and that have been selected by ExpatFinder.


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