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Changes to Our Health Insurance Products for the UAE 2023-24

Headline changes to our products in the UAE

General changes

Repositioning Flex

We introduced Flex a few years ago as a low cost alternative to our Elite products, with correspondingly reduced benefits.

In an effort to remain competitive, over the last few years we introduced options on our Flex plans that narrowed the benefit gap between Elite and Flex while the price differential stayed more or less at its original width.

We inadvertently created a situation where Flex 2 or Flex 3, with top-ups, delivered a benefit schedule very similar to the Silver plan—but at a significantly lower price point. Clearly, this isn’t sustainable and we’ve taken corrective measures. Flex pricing cannot support a Silver claims experience.

We recognise that groups on Flex 1 or Flex 2 will have material changes to consider at their renewal. The William Russell team in the UAE will work with you and our mutual customers to minimise disruption and find a positive route through the changes.

Here are the main differences between last year’s Flex plan and the updated plan:


Plans starting before 01 June 2023 Plans starting on/after 01 June 2023
Kidney dialysis Full cover US$20,000 or AED73,400 on Flex 1 & 2, with double that on Flex 3
Chronic conditions Full cover US$40,872 or AED150,000 on Flex 1, 2 & 3

16% lifetime discount for new individual policies

From 01 June, we’re offering a 16% lifetime discount for all individuals and families purchasing a new health insurance policy. All quotes we issue with a start date of 01 June 2023 or later will include this discount.

A reminder on telemedicine

All members insured on a health policy are eligible for our free telemedicine service, powered by TruDoc. Features include 24/7 virtual consultations with doctors and specialists, multi-lingual support, and simplified prescriptions.

New approach to MHD

We’ve changed our rules for when we can offer medical history disregarded as an underwriting basis. In short, the threshold for MHD increases from 10 employees to 14. This has implications for renewal terms and mid-term adjustments. We’ve written a post about our new approach and why we’ve had to make changes.

Changes to benefits

Infertility treatment (Gold plan for businesses)

The Gold plan now includes cover for infertility treatment up to US$7,000 or AED25,690 per period of cover.

Wisdom tooth extraction (Silver & Gold plans)

The Dental Basic benefit now includes cover for wisdom tooth extraction on the Silver and Gold plans.

Out-patient mental health medication (Silver & Gold)

We boosted the benefit for mental health medication that a member receives as an out-patient.

Plans starting before 01 June 2023 Plans starting on/after 01 June 2023

US$1,000 or AED3,670

US$1,500 or AED5,505
Gold US$1,000 or AED3,670 US$2,000 or AED7,340

Ayurvedic treatment (all plans)

All plans now include cover for ayurvedic treatment up to US$682 or AED2,500 per period of cover.

Reduced benefit for chronic conditions (Flex only)

The updated Flex plan has a benefit limit of US$40,872 or AED150,000 per period of cover for the treatment of pre-existing and chronic conditions. The previous Flex plan provided full cover for pre-existing and chronic conditions.

Reduced benefit for kidney dialysis (Flex only)

The updated Flex 3 plan has a benefit limit of US$40,000 or AED146,800 per period of cover for kidney dialysis. For Flex 1 and Flex 2, the benefit limit is US$20,000 or AED73,400. The previous Flex plans provided full cover for kidney dialysis.

Reduced cover for complementary treatments (Flex only)

On the updated Flex plan, members can have 10 sessions of complementary treatment (e.g., chiropractors, osteopaths) in the 90 days following their discharge from hospital. Previously, members could have 10 sessions of complementary treatment at any time.

Fewer optional benefits on the Flex plan

On the updated Flex plan, we’ve discontinued the option for US$7,000 (or AED25,690) routine in-patient maternity care and the option for full cover for pharmacy costs. If groups had either of these optional benefits on their previous policy, we’ll be in touch.

Changes to our pricing

We do an annual review of our portfolio’s performance. For plans starting after 01 June 2023, we’ve increased the base rate by an average of 6.5%. Please note that the exact figure varies for each plan (e.g., Silver, Flex) and audience (e.g., individuals, groups). Other factors affect a member’s renewal premium, e.g., the member’s age, benefit changes we’ve introduced, and changes the member has made to their plan. These factors sometimes have a greater impact on the renewal premium than the base rate increase.

What else is changing?

We’re changing all the deductible discounts and the price differentials between the Flex 1, 2 and 3 options. We’re also changing how we price the optional dental. From 01 June 2023, the optional dental benefits will cost a flat premium loading, rather than a percentage.

7.5% discount for groups

The 7.5% discount for new group health policies expires 31 May 2023.

Technical changes

We’re making the following technical changes to the plan agreements for policies starting on/after 01 June 2023.

Exclusion for congenital conditions (all plans)

The plan agreements for the updated plans contain an exclusion for deformities arising during the ante-natal stages of pregnancy or caused during childbirth.

Wording for the rehabilitation treatment benefit (all plans)

We’ve clarified the wording for the rehabilitation treatment benefit to make it clearer to members what it covers.

Medically necessary termination of pregnancy (all plans)

We clarified the wording for the in-patient maternity care benefit to make it clear that our plans provide cover for medically necessary termination of pregnancies.

The above changes apply to residents of the UAE whose health insurance policy renews on or after 01 June 2023. Our article about our new health insurance products for residents outside the UAE is available on our blog.