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Dubai News

Long-term visa for doctors a positive step

November 26, 2018

Dubai: The UAE cabinet’s decision to implement a long-term visa system for many categories, including doctors and other specialists, has been welcomed by the health care sector. A ten-year visa for doctors would help build a more sustainable eco system for highly-trained specialists looking to stay long-term in the emirate and give a positive boost to the health care industry.

Prasanth Manghat, CEO and Executive Director of NMC Health Plc, thinks of the new law as another step in the evolution and consolidation of health care sector’s best practices.

“The practice of medicine is a fine blend of tradition and innovation, authencity and passion as we all know; it flourishes over a stable period of time. The consolidation of health care practice is currently underway in the UAE and the 10-year visa for health care professionals would further strengthen this process. The medical professionals can now do a better career planning with a look at a stable career span and focus on their patients with a long haul perspective and also invest in their academics and skill upgradation, accordingly.”

The consolidation of health care practice is currently underway in the UAE and the 10-year visa… will strengthen this process. – Prasanth Manghat | CEO NMC Health Plc

Alisha Moopen, executive director and CEO of Aster and Medcare Hospitals, thinks the new law will attract top specialists to come to the UAE with long-term plans and add lasting stability to the sector: “In health care, the most critical and crucial requirement is the quality of medical professionals who are in short supply worldwide. Besides, attracting the best talent among these is a real challenge. In Dubai as per the 2017 statistics provided by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), only 7.5 per cent of the physicians and doctors are nationals. The rest are all expatriates. We need extremely attractive mechanisms to attract the best talent to ensure sound health care delivery.”

Moopen observed that the inclusion of doctors into the long-term visa eligibility category, indicated a major shift towards building a long term sustainable health care model. “Today for advanced surgeries and treatment, many patients travel abroad, and expats tend to travel back to their home countries. With experienced professionals delivering tertiary and quaternary care across hospitals and institutions in UAE, we can not only make international standards of advanced care locally available, but also continue to strengthen UAE’s position as the hub for international medical care in the region.”

She added: “The new long-term visa law will significantly encourage medical professionals to shift base with families here to enhance health care delivery, look at research opportunities that require long-term commitment. The law will help doctors expand their horizon and build sustainable models for a resilient future proof health care ecosystem which requires the best talent to come on board.”

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