x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Insure workers or face fines, companies told

Health Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD) has launched a campaign to educate employers about the compulsory Health Insurance Scheme.

ABU DHABI //Companies failing to provide employees with medical insurance will receive stiff penalties, the emirate's health officials warned yesterday.

Jamal Mohammed Al Kaabi, the head of customer service and corporate communications at the Health Authority Abu Dhabi, said employers and sponsors were required by law to provide health insurance to employees and their family.

This includes cover for any male employee's spouse and three children below the age of 18. The law also applies to labourers at construction companies.

An employer or sponsor who does not subscribe to a health insurance scheme or does not renew a health insurance policy is subject to a minimum fine of Dh300 per employee or worker, per month.

Mr Al Kaabi was speaking at the launch of a campaign publicising the activation of Abu Dhabi's health insurance law.

The law was issued in 2005, Mr Al Kaabi said, but fines for non-compliance were not activated until last year.

"The administrative process of activating the fines started in May 2010, and at that time his highness Sheikh Khalifa passed an order to [hold] all the fines," Mr Al Kaabi said.

"We spent four months under that order and then we decided to establish a committee within the health authority to look into all appeals that are presented through customer service and the committee."

In September, the Appeal Committee for Insurance Fines was established at the health authority with the responsibility of reviewing all health insurance appeals.

Since May 2010, the committee has received 42,153 appeals.

mismail@thenational.ae