Healthcare Scenario of Abu Dhabi

Are you planning to build or restructure or venture in any healthcare venture in Abu Dhabi? Looking for information about the major healthcare players in Government, Private diagnostic centers that are available in Abu Dhabi? Are you looking to find out which part of the of the city’s is best to venture in or what all facilities are available and what all should be planned for new setup? In this article Hospaccx Healthcare Consultancy has mapped all on major players in terms of medical facilities and healthcare scenario in Abu Dhabi.


Abu Dhabi is the capital and the second most populous city of the United Arab Emirates and also capital of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, the largest of the UAE’s seven emirates. Abu Dhabi lies on a T-shaped island jutting into the Persian Gulf from the central western coast.

Abu Dhabi’s rapid development and urbanisation, coupled with the relatively high average income of its population, has transformed the city into a large and advanced metropolis. Today the city is the country’s centre of political and industrial activities, and a major cultural and commercial centre.

Abu Dhabi also ranks as the 67th most expensive city in the world, and the second most in the region behind Dubai.

Population Mix

Economy of Abu Dhabi

The economy of Abu Dhabi is largely based upon the revenue generated from natural resources. Petroleum and natural gas play a vital role, although some other sectors are also emerging in order to support the city’s economy.

Abu Dhabi experiences a rapidly growing economy with a high GDP and per capita income. It is not only the wealthiest emirate of the UAE but also qualifies as one of the wealthiest cities in the world.

In 2016, GDP was AED (Arab Emirates Dirham) 791,371 million, oil sector contributed 49.2% and non-oil sector contributed 50.8%. GDP per Capita was found to be 267.8 thousand of which AED 131.8 thousand were petroleum products and 136 thousand were non-petroleum products.


Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH) is the city’s main aviation hub and the second busiest airport in the UAE.

Growth Plans for Abu Dhabi 

1.Barakah Nuclear Power Plant

The first nuclear plant will supply 25 per cent of the UAE’s electricity needs from May 2020, the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation says. The Dh84.4bn project includes four reactors producing a combined 5,600 megawatts.

2.Sewage Tunnel

Abu Dhabi planning officials say the 41-kilometre sewage tunnel is among the world’s longest. With an additional 43km of smaller linking tunnels, the Dh5.5bn project is due to be completed this year.

3.E11 Highway

The new highway and road upgrade will link Abu Dhabi with the Saudi border through the industrial centre of Ruwais, the site of the UAE’s first nuclear plant. The project includes 15 flyovers and will cost Dh5.5bn.

4.Zayed City infrastructure

The Government says the road network, sewerage, lighting, electricity and water infrastructure for Zayed City, a new district in Abu Dhabi, is about 20 per cent complete. The Dh3.3bn project is expected to be finished by January 2020.

5.Midfield Terminal

At a cost of Dh19.1bn, Abu Dhabi’s new terminal will have 65 gates and will double the airport’s capacity to 45 million passengers a year. Built over six levels, it will include a hotel, shops and restaurants when it is finished in January 2019.

6.Al Ain New Hospital

The 719-bed hospital will cost Dh4.4bn. complete in December 2019.

7.Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City

The first hospital in Abu Dhabi to provide advanced treatment for burns, it will hold 739 beds when it opens,at a cost of Dh4bn.

Healthcare Scenario of Abu Dhabi

The health-care industry in Abu Dhabi has witnessed rapid growth in the past few years fuelled by an increase in population, rising health awareness and access to quality care, high incidence of lifestyle-related diseases, an ageing population and a sharp spurt in per capita health-care expenditure.

The shortage of medical personnel and rising costs are key challenges affecting the health-care system.  Abu Dhabi is heavily dependent on expatriates to fill nursing and physicians’ positions.

According to the Health Authority — Abu Dhabi (HAAD), 2,000 additional doctors and more than 5,000 nurses will be required in 2022. HAAD also points out that in 2021, demand for inpatient services may require more than 1,300 additional beds (currently there are 3,659), based on the expected improved occupancy rate of 70 per cent.

Growth in demand for health-care services associated with the prevention and treatment of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, respiratory conditions, emergency medicine and neuropsychiatric conditions is expected to be particularly high.

To manage the present and future health-care needs, the capital’s health-care delivery system is expanding its coverage and spending in both the public and private sectors.

Health Insurance

Health Insurance in Abu Dhabi Health insurance is mandatory for all residents in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. The Abu Dhabi Government provides full medical coverage for all UAE Nationals living in Abu Dhabi. In Cooperation with the National Health Insurance Company (Daman), the Abu Dhabi government runs a UAE national insurance scheme called Thiqa (which means “trust” in Arabic). Thiqa is open to Nationals living in Abu Dhabi. They can use healthcare services from more than 1600 medical providers (including both public and private) that are part of Daman’s network. There are 33 licensed insurers competing for members in Abu Dhabi. With a market share of 85% Daman is the absolute market leader in Abu Dhabi.

Health factors, risks and disease patterns

The vast economic growth of the UAE has dramatically changed the lifestyle of most of its citizens. Rising affluence and the resulting new lifestyle have generated diseases such as diabetes, coronary and cardiovascular, hypertension, cancer, allergies, respiratory and skin diseases. Major risk factors that are causing this trend include the population’s unhealthy diet choices, lack of physical activity, incidences of being overweight and obesity, and tobacco smoking.

Others include the hot weather, which makes walking difficult and an excessive use of cars are owned.

The aging population and the rise in lifestyle related diseases will increase the demand for healthcare providers. As mentioned earlier the UAE government is trying to keep up with the demand for healthcare by attracting private providers and encouraging the development of public private partnerships.

Important Entities

In 2001, the Abu Dhabi government established the General Authority of Health Services (GAHS) to match its healthcare services to that of its economic growth. In 2007, the GAHS was split into two separate organizations, the Health Authority of Abu Dhabi (HAAD) and the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA). HAAD is the regulatory body of healthcare in Abu Dhabi and SEHA (which means health in Arabic) is the operator of public healthcare assets in Abu Dhabi.

1.The Health Authority – Abu Dhabi (HAAD)–HAAD is the regulative body of the Healthcare Sector in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. HAAD defines the strategy for the health system, monitors and analyses the health status of the population and performance of the system. In addition HAAD shapes the regulatory framework for the health system, inspects against regulations, enforces standards, and encourages adoption of world–class best practices and performance targets by all healthcare service providers in the Emirate. HAAD also drives programs to increase awareness and adoption of healthy living standards among the residents of Abu Dhabi.

2.Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA)– SEHA is an independent, public joint stock company (PJSC) created to manage and develop the curative activities of the public hospitals and clinics of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

SEHA aims to deliver world class healthcare, locally, by partnering with internationally recognized healthcare leaders.

In short, HAAD regulates all healthcare entities, public and private, by licensing them, setting clear rules and ensuring everyone complies.

HAAD does not own or build facilities, treat patients, pay for treatment or pay the private sector to partner. SEHA is the public provider: it owns and develops existing public healthcare facilities, treats patients and partners with private players to manage its facilities.

3.Daman, The National Health Insurance Company– Another important player in Abu Dhabi’s healthcare sector is Daman. Daman was formed in 2005 and became the UAE’s first specialized National Health Insurance Company.

4.Mubadala Development Company– Mubadala is a wholly owned investment vehicle of the Government of Abu Dhabi. The mandate of Mubadala is to facilitate the diversification of Abu Dhabi’s economy. Mubadala has nine business units operating in a diverse range of strategic sectors deemed important for Abu Dhabi’s economy, one of the business units being Healthcare. Mubadala Healthcare is playing an instrumental role in the creation of a thriving private healthcare sector in Abu Dhabi. Mubadala Healthcare tries to establish long-term partnerships with renowned international medical institutions to build sustainable businesses, create regional capacity, and to stimulate the overall development of the sector.

A good example is the Cleveland Clinic in Abu Dhabi; Mubadala Healthcare provides the capital and local business acumen, while Cleveland Clinic brings the clinical expertise to manage and operate the hospital.

Medical Tourism in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi ranks 2nd out of 13 countries surveyed in the Medical Tourism Index for the Arabic region. But Abu Dhabi struggles on the medical tourism industry dimension, mainly because the cost of healthcare is still perceived as too high. They have been working hard at building a tourism friendly city with impressive attractions but, even with this, it still got them 4th place in the region on the medical tourism industry dimension, which accounts for both, healthcare costs and attractiveness of the country. Finally, the facility and service quality dimension came in strong for Abu Dhabi, as its scores and ranks are second to best in the region, including the facilities international accreditations and its quality of care.

So Abu Dhabi should be focusing more on the cost side of medical treatments as well as the cultural and language match sub-dimensions, while taking advantage of the expat community and the local work force’s western education in order to built a campaign that will increase medical tourism business. 

List of Medical Colleges in Abu Dhabi

1.Avalon University School of Medicine (AUSOM) 

It was founded in 2003 and is chartered by the government of Curacao.

2.Fatima College of Health Sciences – Abu Dhabi

Established in 2006 offers Bsc. in Nursing Program and has now extended to 10 degree programs at BSc. And Diploma Levels in Health Science. Nursing System is functioning in a joint effort with Griffith University in Australia. 

List of Hospitals in Abu Dhabi


UEMedical, part of United Eastern Group, claims to be Abu Dhabi’s leading privately owned healthcare development and investment company. It was established the 150-bed Danat Al Emarat Hospital in Abu Dhabi, which opened in August 2015.

2.VPS Healthcare

It is an integrated healthcare provider with over 7,500 worldwide employees, operates ten hospitals in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Oman, and India under the luxury Burjeel and the midrange LLH and Lifecare brands.

3.Al Noor Hospitals Group

It is the largest private healthcare company in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi with seven facilities in Abu Dhabi city, one in the Western Region, and two in Al Ain.

4.Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC)

It is the largest hospital in the UAE, consisting of a 586-bed tertiary hospital, 14 outpatient specialty clinics, and the Abu Dhabi Blood Bank, all of which are accredited by the Joint Commission International.

SKMC is also accredited as a Cycle IV Chest Pain Center with Primary Angioplasty Intervention, having been the first outside the USA to achieve Cycle III recognition and only the 12th worldwide to do so. It is also accredited by the College of American Pathologists for its Main Laboratory and the Abu Dhabi Blood Bank.

SKMC also manages a 125-bed Behavioral Sciences Pavilion and an Urgent Care Center.

SKMC is a member of the SEHA Health System

5.Al Salama Hospital

It is a multi specialty medical hub with advanced keyhole surgical facilities was commissioned since 1979. Situated in one of the main streets of Abu Dhabi. It is considered as one of the leading hospital in the city. It was accredited in 2010, 2013 by the JCI and re-accredited in 2016.

6.Ahalia Hospital

Since last three decades has tirelessly been caring for the healthcare needs of the people of Abu Dhabi. The hospital has taken a leap for the International Gold standards by accreditation with the JCI (USA).

7.Dar AL Shifaa Hospital

It was licensed in April 1982. It is one of the largest private medical institution in the UAE. The hospital has the most sophisticated and modern medical equipment and offers both in-patient and out-patient services. It can undertake both routine and critical surgeries.

8.Al Raha hospital

It is managed by Abeer Medical group, is a state of the art 50 bedded tertiary care multispecialty hospital excelling the best patient care providing evidence based, latest treatment modalities with all Specialties and Super Specialties of health care

Al Raha hospital is in compliance to the HAAD and JCI standards to improve quality of care.

9.NMC Hospital

Established in 1975, NMC Specialty Hospital Abu Dhabi is a multi-specialty hospital providing quality and trusted healthcare services to the people of Abu Dhabi and the surrounding region. The hospital is affiliated with all major national as well as international insurance companies and enjoys direct billing facilities with the insurance companies and third party administrators (TPA). 

List of Single Speciality Hospitals in Abu Dhabi

1.Danat Al Emarat Hospital

It is located just off 30th street near Abu Dhabi Gate. It is a hospital for women and children in Abu Dhabi.  This facility is on 45,000 square metres site with 150 hospital beds for women and children.

2.HealthPlus Clinics

The HealthPlus Children’s Specialty Center, the first outpatient facility delivering integrated, multi-specialty pediatric care in a nurturing and child-centric environment.

3.Moorfields Eye Hospital Abu Dhabi

It delivers a wide range of services from simple eye tests to complex eye surgery.

List of Diagnostic Centres in Abu Dhabi

1.Proficiency Healthcare Diagnostics (PHD)

It is a part of Anglo Arabian Healthcare and is an established network of quality accredited laboratories and radiology centres situated across the UAE.

2.Advanced Cure Diagnostic Centres

It was founded in 2007 as a comprehensive ambulatory care unit. Located in the heart of Abu Dhabi.

3.Dar al-Mouasah Diagnostic Centre

Based in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates- established in 1986 and located on the Heart of City.  Dar Al Mouasah Diagnostic Centre have been providing following Clinical diagnostic services (Pathology Laboratory and Radiology) to the patients since 26 years.

4.Exeter Bone and Joint 

It was developed to be the first fully specialized musculoskeletal center in the region, providing the highest standard of care in Orthopedics, Neurology, Rheumatology and other related services.

5.Genetic DNA labs

It is a conglomerate of Doctors, Hospitals and research laboratory with only sole purpose of making healthcare cheaper and accessible to all people across the globe.


The country faces the shortage of medical professionals and is also dependent on other countries to fill the gaps. The treatment here is quite expensive which makes population to travel to other emirates and this also hampers the medical tourism of the country. Considering the growing population and need for the healthcare services – Abu Dhabi opens an opportunity for the both Medical colleges and hospitals which can provide the quality services at normal cost.

if you need any support in planning and designing of a new hospital you can contact us: Hospaccx healthcare business consulting Pvt. Ltd on: [email protected] Or you can visit our website



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