• Ankur Upadhyay

TREATMENT ABROAD FOR KUWAITIS

Updated: May 16, 2019



Kuwait population is nearly around 4,75 million. Citizens comprise of 30% (1,4 million) and expatriates are 70% (3.34 million) as of May 2019.


Medical treatment for Kuwait citizens are free of cost and largely sponsored by the state in form of private medical insurance, government medical services and treatment abroad.


Kuwait Ministry of Health manages the Department of Overseas Medical Treatment. A special medical committee of senior doctors appointed by the Ministry of Health act as an Independent Medical Board to approve the patients for medical treatment abroad.


Eligibility or Criteria for any patient to be considered for treatment abroad are -

  • The patient required to be treated abroad must be a Kuwaiti citizen.

  • The required treatment must not be available in Kuwait.

In March this year, according to Arab Times Minister of Health Dr Basel Al-Sabah disclosed the number of approvals for overseas treatment after they were approved by the specialized committees of hospitals and medical centers during the first half of 2018. The figure was 3,900 cases, an average of around 650 cases per month. Most received treatment in the UK, the United States and Germany.


" United Kingdom, United States of America & Germany contribute 75% of the cases approved for Treatment Abroad"

According to the statistics issued by the Department of Overseas Medical Treatment, in response to a parliamentary question, said the number of approvals from Jan 1, 2018 until the end of June 2018 was distributed as follows – 560 cases in January, 419 in February, 540 in March, 784 in April, 975 in May and 622 in June.


According to statistics, 75 percent of the cases (2,928) went to three countries – Britain (1,098), America (927) and Germany (903)


The remaining cases were distributed as follows – 539 to France and 117 to Spain, 72 to the UAE, 36 to Saudi Arabia, 60 to Egypt, 48 to Jordan, 12 to Belgium, 9 to Italy, 5 each to Switzerland, South Korea and the Netherlands, two to Lebanon, one each to Japan and India.


Despite efforts to improve local health facilities, many Kuwaitis do not trust local hospitals. Local healthcare is in transition from public to private healthcare.


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