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Medical Tourism: The IVF Boom in the UAE
Posted on Sep 08, 2014 by Mike Peterson
The UAE is quickly becoming one of the world leaders in IVF and conception assistance treatment. Find out why, and how you can benefit from this revolution.
Known for opulence and luxury, the UAE is a popular tourist destination for its unique ability to blend modern and traditional, urban and natural, and Middle-Eastern and Western cultures. What many don’t realize is that the UAE is also experiencing a medical tourism boom at present, most notably in the field of conception assistance. In reality though it makes perfect sense, because the UAE, Dubai and Abu Dhabi in particular, are home to some of the best hospitals and clinics in the region -- on par with the very best in the world. And for couples who are unable to have a child on their own, investing in the best assistance available, even if it is not the cheapest option, can mean the difference between being able to experience the joy of having a baby -- or not.
What Is Driving the Movement?
Around the world, numerous factors are making conceiving a child more difficult, and the UAE isn’t immune. Lifestyle-related risks such as increasing stress cause lower sperm count in men, and polycystic ovarian disease, endometriosis, poor egg quality, and the general movement toward having children later in life all contribute to fertility issues in women.
Today however, a new challenge is facing many couples: more stringent regulation within their home country over who qualifies for government subsidies toward the costs of conception assistance and IVF treatments. Many countries’ universal healthcare plans have little or no provision for this type of care. This means that paying for IVF is often entirely the responsibility of the couple themselves, and while this may seem like it would drastically reduce the demand for these services, the reality is that demand remains high worldwide. This is where the UAE becomes a real, viable option.
Why So Many Couples Are Choosing IVF in the UAE
The UAE, with its plethora of extremely capable private medical centers and IVF experts, has the freedom to accept any patients it wishes and the capacity to treat a great number more than just the UAE’s own families in need -- meaning that the UAE’s IVF centers are happy to welcome patients from around the globe. As a result, the UAE has become a go-to destination for couples in need of IVF from the Middle East, Europe, Russia and even East Asia.
Further, with a history of a very high population of expatriate professionals in the UAE’s major cities, IVF clinics in the region are accustomed to the needs and expectations of foreign patients. This includes standards of care and quality of medical facilities.
Additionally, doctors and support staff speak English, and in some cases other Western languages as well, and all healthcare facilities in major cities in the UAE are equivalent to those of the EU or North America. Foreign patients can feel safe and secure in their choice of care.
What You Should Know About IVF in the UAE
While high-quality medical care, and IVF in particular, are commonplace and thoroughly regulated in the UAE, this type of care isn’t cheap. The UAE is a highly developed society, and the cost for IVF treatment in the region is approximately the same as that of other developed countries. The difference, and what has made the UAE so popular with foreigners who may not have deep pockets, is that many conception assistance clinics and doctors are very willing to work with and accept health insurance plans that will help to ease the personal cost of care.
Not every insurance policy can provide these types of benefits, so care is needed when selecting a plan and provider. If you are considering IVF in the UAE, or anywhere else, talk to one of UAE Medical Insurance’s expert advisers. An insurance advisor can help by comparing and contrasting comprehensive coverage from dozens of private health insurance providers and hundreds of different policies, so you can find the perfect plan to suit your specific needs, including coverage for IVF and other conception-assistance benefits. Discuss your options today.
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