Do you intend to work as a doctor in Dubai or the UAE? Working as a doctor in the UAE provides fantastic career opportunities and a high standard of living. But the immigration procedure can be complicated. This guide will take you step-by-step through the process to help you immigrate to the UAE as a doctor. Keep reading to learn about all necessary details, requirements, and advice to make the process easier.
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Immigrate to the UAE as a Doctor
Can Foreign Doctors Work in the UAE?
Many foreigners ask: “Can doctors work in the UAE?” Yes, a foreigner can immigrate to the UAE as a doctor. They must fulfill specific requirements, including having a recognized medical degree, passing a licensing exam, and obtaining a work visa and residency permit.
Is There a Demand for Doctors in the UAE?
There is a significant demand for doctors in the UAE, driven by its expanding healthcare sector, population growth, and the development of medical tourism.
Which Doctor is Most in Demand in the UAE?
General Practitioners are currently the most in-demand doctors in the UAE.
What are the Requirements for Doctors to Work in the UAE?
To immigrate to the UAE as a doctor, several key requirements and steps need to be fulfilled:
- You must hold a medical degree from a recognized and accredited medical school. Your degree and qualifications must be verified (DataFlow Group verification process).
- Passing a licensing examination is mandatory. Here are the exams and places:
- Dubai: Dubai Health Authority (DHA) examination.
- Abu Dhabi: Health Authority-Abu Dhabi (HAAD) examination.
- Other Emirates: Ministry of Health & Prevention (MOH) examination.
- A good command of English is essential. Use tests like IELTS, TOEFL, or OET. Basic Arabic skills can also be beneficial for patient interaction and integration.
- Depending on the position and the healthcare institution, 2-5 years of postgraduate medical experience is typically required.
- Professional Liability Insurance. It protects you against legal claims related to medical malpractice.
- A job offer and an employment contract.
- Work visa and residency permit. Usually, your employer will sponsor you.
How to Immigrate to the UAE as a Doctor?
Let us tell you how to work as a doctor in the UAE. Immigrating to the UAE as a doctor involves several key steps:
- Verifying Your Qualifications
- Taking the Licensing Examination
- Having Language Proficiency
- Securing a Job Offer
- Getting a Work Visa and Residency Permit
- Settling in the UAE as a Doctor
Step 1. Verifying Your Qualifications
Working in the UAE as a doctor requires qualification recognition. This typically involves getting your credentials verified through the UAE’s Ministry of Health & Prevention (MOH), the Department of Health for Abu Dhabi (DOH), or the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), depending on where you plan to practice. Let’s look at the steps:
- Gather all necessary documents, including your medical degree, postgraduate qualifications, and professional experience certificates. Ensure that all documents are in English or Arabic. If they are in another language, get them officially translated.
- Get your educational documents attested by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in your home country. The UAE Embassy or Consulate in your country must then attest these documents. The cost of document attestation ranges from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars, and it takes several weeks.
- The UAE health authorities use a third-party company called DataFlow Group for primary source verification of your credentials. Register and create an account on the DataFlow Group’s portal. Then, you must submit your documents for verification. This includes your degree certificates, transcripts, and professional experience certificates. Each document must be uploaded according to the specified guidelines. DataFlow verification fees range between $200 and $500, and it takes 4 to 6 weeks.
- After DataFlow submission, apply to the relevant health authority (MOH, DOH, or DHA) based on where you plan to work. You must complete their application form and submit the necessary documents, including the DataFlow report.
- Once your application is submitted, regularly check your application status. You must be responsive to any queries or additional documentation requests from the health authority or DataFlow.
- After verifying your documents, you will receive a verification certificate or a ‘Pass Status’ from the health authority. This is essential for proceeding with the licensing exam and job applications. The total time from starting the process to receiving verification can range from 2 to 3 months.
Step 2. Taking the Licensing Examination
To immigrate to the UAE as a doctor, you may need to pass a licensing exam. For example, the DHA conducts exams for those wishing to work in Dubai. Let’s look at the licensing examinations for those moving to Dubai as doctors:
Dubai Health Authority (DHA) – For Dubai Region
All healthcare professionals who wish to work as doctors in Dubai in the private or public sector in Dubai need this. The exam covers topics like the applicant’s medical field, including clinical knowledge, patient care, and ethical practices. It is conducted annually, costing approximately AED 1000 to AED 1500 (subject to change).
To apply, you must register on the DHA’s Sheryan portal, complete the online self-assessment tool, submit the required documents, choose an exam date, and pay the examination fee.
Health Authority of Abu Dhabi (HAAD) – For Abu Dhabi Region
Medical professionals intending to work in Abu Dhabi must get this license. The exam tests general medical knowledge, specialized area knowledge, and professional judgment. This exam is available throughout the year with multiple date options, costing from AED 800 to AED 1200.
You must apply through the HAAD’s online portal, Pearson Vue, complete the application form and upload the necessary documents, select the exam date, and pay the required fee.
Ministry of Health & Prevention (MOH) – For Other Emirates
This UAE medical license exam for foreigners is for practitioners who want to work in the Northern Emirates (Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah, and Fujairah). The exam focuses on general medical principles and the applicant’s specialty area. It is conducted regularly. Applicants can choose from available dates during the application process. It costs approximately AED 800 to AED 1100.
To apply, you must register through the MOH’s online application system, fill in the required details, submit your documents, select your preferred exam date, and make the payment.
Step 3. Having Language Proficiency
A good command of English is essential for most medical positions in the UAE. The required level is often B2 or higher. To show your proficiency, you can use tests such as IELTS (a minimum score of 6.0 to 7.50), TOEFL (from 80 to 100 in the TOEFL iBT), and OET (a minimum grade of B).
On the other hand, proficiency in Arabic can be an advantage. A basic to intermediate understanding (A2 to B1) may be necessary for certain positions. You can use tests, such as the Arabic Language Proficiency Test (ALPT) and the Test of Arabic as a Foreign Language (TEFL), to show your proficiency.
Step 4. Securing a Job Offer
To immigrate to the UAE as a doctor, you need to secure a job offer from a healthcare facility in the UAE. You can use the following to find doctor jobs in the UAE:
Online Job Portals
- Indeed UAE
Famous Recruitment Agencies in the UAE
- Michael Page
- Robert Half
Doctor Recruitment Agencies in Dubai
- Davidson Management Consultants
- OHR Recruitment
- Medacs Healthcare
Step 5. Getting a Work Visa and Residency Permit
Once you have a job offer, your employer will typically sponsor your work visa and residency permit. To get a UAE work visa:
- Receive and sign an employment contract necessary for the visa process.
- Your employer in the UAE acts as your sponsor and initiates the visa application process. They will apply for an entry permit, allowing you to enter the UAE legally. The entry permit fee is approximately AED 300 to AED 600.
- Provide your employer with the required documents, typically including:
- A copy of your passport (with at least six months validity)
- Passport-size photos
- Your academic and professional certificates
- A copy of your signed job offer or employment contract
- Medical certificate from an approved health center in your home country
- The entry permit is usually processed within a few days to a week. Once your entry permit is approved, you will receive a copy. This permit gives you the right to enter the UAE to obtain your work visa.
- Travel to the UAE using the entry permit.
Step 6. Settling in the UAE as a Doctor
Congratulations. You’ve made it to the UAE, but how to start to work as a doctor in the UAE? Here is a list of requirements to work as a doctor in Dubai or the UAE in general.
Medical Fitness Test in the UAE
You must do it to screen for infectious diseases as part of the residency visa process. Upon arrival, schedule a medical fitness test at an authorized medical center in the UAE. This includes blood tests and a chest X-ray. The medical fitness test fee is around AED 300 to AED 500 and takes about 1 to 2 weeks.
Emirates ID Application
The Emirates ID is an essential legal requirement for all residents. You must visit an Emirates Identity Authority (EIDA) center, submit your passport, visa, and other required documents, and provide biometric data, including fingerprints and a photograph. The Emirates ID fee is approximately AED 100 to AED 300 and takes about 1 to 2 weeks.
Residence Visa Stamping
You must do it to officially validate your residency status in the UAE. After passing the medical fitness test, submit your passport to the UAE immigration authority through your employer. Your residence visa will be stamped in your passport. The residence visa stamping fee is AED 400 to AED 800, which can take 1 to 3 weeks.
It is necessary for accessing healthcare services in the UAE. You must apply for a health card at the nearest health center. Also, submit the required documentation, including your Emirates ID and passport.
Famous Banks in UAE
- Emirates NBD
- Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB)
- Dubai Islamic Bank
- First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB)
- HSBC UAE
Famous Housing Websites
- Property Finder
- Better homes
- Health Insurance
Famous Health Insurance Companies
- AXA Gulf
- MetLife UAE
- Daman National Health Insurance Company
- Orient Insurance
- Takaful Emarat
- Continuing Education and Compliance
Tips to Settle in the UAE as a Doctor
- Stay informed about the UAE’s medical laws and ethical guidelines.
- Engage in Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Professional Development (CPD) programs.
- Regularly attend workshops, seminars, and training to stay updated in your field.
- Learn about UAE culture and traditions.
- Develop a basic understanding of Arabic for better patient communication.
- Network with other medical professionals and join professional associations.
Famous Professional Liability Insurance Providers
- AXA Insurance
- Oman Insurance Company
- Allianz Insurance
- Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (ADNIC)
- RSA Insurance
Can a Doctor Work in the UAE Without a License?
No, a doctor cannot legally work in the UAE without a valid medical license. The UAE requires all doctors to obtain a license from the appropriate health authority. Practicing medicine without a license in the UAE is illegal and can lead to severe legal consequences.
Can a Doctor Work in Dubai without a DHA License?
No, a doctor cannot legally work in Dubai without a Dubai Health Authority (DHA) license. The DHA license is mandatory to practice medicine in Dubai. Working in Dubai as a doctor without a Dubai doctor license (DHA) is considered illegal. It can lead to serious legal repercussions, including penalties and prohibition from future practice within the UAE.
How Can Doctors Get a DHA License in Dubai?
To work as a doctor in Dubai and obtain a Dubai Health Authority (DHA) license, you must:
- Ensure you have a recognized medical degree and have relevant clinical experience.
- Register on the DataFlow Group’s website.
- Submit your educational and professional documents for verification. This includes your medical degree, transcripts, certificates of experience, and good standing certificate. Also, pay the verification fee.
- Register for a Sheryan account on the DHA website by completing your profile with the required personal and professional details.
- Some specialties may require a Professional Assessment Test before proceeding. In that case, you must complete a self-assessment tool to gauge your readiness for the DHA exam.
- Schedule the DHA exam for doctors in Dubai by applying for the DHA exam through your Sheryan account. Choose a suitable date and location for the exam. Pay the exam fee.
- Prepare for the exam. The DHA exam tests your medical knowledge and skills. Adequate preparation is vital. Utilize available resources and study materials to prepare.
- Take the exam. Attend the exam on your scheduled date and time.
- After passing the exam, you’ll receive an eligibility letter from the DHA.
- Apply for the license by completing the license application on the DHA portal. Submit the required documents, including your eligibility letter and DataFlow report.
- Once approved, your DHA license will be issued, allowing you to practice in Dubai.
How Much Does a Foreign Doctor Make in the UAE?
The average annual salary ranges from AED 240,000 to over AED 720,000. Also, the average hourly wage of a doctor in the UAE is approximately AED 115 to AED 350 per hour. Here is more information:
- Family Medicine Doctor Salary in UAE: AED 300,000 to AED 600,000 per year.
- General Doctor Salary in UAE: AED 240,000 to AED 480,000 per year.
- Doctor Salary in UAE per Month: AED 20,000 to AED 60,000.
- Internal Medicine Doctor Salary in Dubai: AED 360,000 to AED 660,000 annually.
- American Doctor Salary in Dubai: AED 300,000 to AED 720,000 annually, depending on experience and specialty.
How Much Does a Doctor Make in Dubai?
The average hourly salary of a doctor in Dubai is around AED 120 to AED 360. Here is more information:
- Doctor Salary in Dubai Per Month: AED 20,000 to AED 60,000.
- The average Salary of a Doctor in Dubai: AED 240,000 to AED 720,000.
Doctor Jobs in UAE with Salary
- General Practitioner: AED 20,000 – AED 40,000 per month
- Specialist (e.g., Cardiologist, Neurologist): AED 40,000 – AED 80,000 per month
- Consultant: AED 60,000 – AED 120,000 per month
- Surgeon: AED 70,000 – AED 150,000 per month
Specialist Doctor Salary in UAE
- Cardiologist, Neurologist, Pediatrician, Gynecologist: AED 40,000 – AED 80,000 per month
- Orthopedic Surgeon, Plastic Surgeon: AED 50,000 – AED 120,000 per month
- Dermatologist: AED 40,000 – AED 90,000 per month
- Ophthalmologist: AED 40,000 – AED 85,000 per month
How to Become a Doctor in the UAE?
Becoming a doctor in the UAE as a foreign student is a multi-step process. Let us tell you how to be a doctor in the UAE:
- Selecting a Medical University in the UAE
- Apply for Admission
- Obtaining a UAE Student Visa
- Studying Medicine in the UAE
Step 1. Selecting a Medical University in the UAE
Begin by researching universities in the UAE that offer accredited medical programs. Utilize educational websites, university rankings, and medical education forums for information. Famous medical universities are:
- United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) in Al Ain
- Gulf Medical University (GMU) in Ajman
- Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences (MBRU) in Dubai
- Dubai Medical College
- RAK Medical & Health Sciences University
Step 2. Apply for Admission
- Visit the chosen university’s website and access the admissions portal.
- Review detailed admission criteria, typically including academic transcripts, standardized test scores (e.g., SAT, MCAT), letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.
- Complete the online application form, upload the required documents, and pay any application fee.
- Some universities may require additional steps like entrance exams or interviews.
Step 3. Obtaining a UAE Student Visa
How to be a doctor in Dubai or the UAE in general? You must secure an official admission letter from the university. Don’t forget to ensure the university sponsors your UAE student visa. Then you can start:
- Complete the student visa application form provided by the university.
- Provide necessary documents, including a valid passport, passport-size photos, admission letter, proof of financial means, and academic records.
- Undertake a medical fitness test in your home country or the UAE, as required.
- Pay the visa fee (ranges from AED 1,000 to AED 3,000) and a refundable security deposit (if applicable).
- Wait for the processing and approval of your visa. It typically takes about 2 to 5 weeks. The university typically assists with this process.
- Once the visa is approved, plan your travel to the UAE.
Step 4. Studying Medicine in the UAE
The medical program usually lasts for 6 years, including a foundational pre-medical year. The curriculum encompasses basic medical sciences, clinical knowledge, and practical skills, covering anatomy, physiology, pathology, pharmacology, and patient care.
Don’t forget to budget your money. The annual tuition fees in the UAE for medicine programs vary, ranging from AED 30,000 to AED 75,000, depending on the university.
Step 5. Internship
After completing theoretical studies, you must undergo a 1-year internship. This period involves rotating through various medical departments, gaining practical experience and clinical exposure.
After graduating and completing your internship, you must pass the relevant local licensing examinations to practice as a doctor in the UAE. Studying in the UAE offers the advantage of experiencing a diverse cultural environment and exposure to advanced medical facilities. Each step, from choosing a university to applying for a visa, requires attention to detail and adherence to the guidelines provided by the educational institutions and the UAE government.
Medical Doctor Jobs in Dubai
- General Practitioners
- Specialists in fields like Cardiology, Neurology, Pediatrics, Gynecology
- Surgeons (General, Orthopedic, Neuro, Cardiac)
- Emergency Medicine Doctors
Ayurveda Doctor Jobs in UAE
- Ayurveda Practitioners in Wellness Centers
- Ayurvedic Consultants in Alternative Medicine Clinics
- Ayurveda Therapists in Spas and Resorts
- Researchers in Herbal Medicine
Working as a Doctor in Dubai from the UK
Working as a doctor in Dubai from the UK involves several steps. You must:
- Get your UK medical qualifications verified through DataFlow in Dubai.
- Pass the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) licensing exam for medical practitioners.
- Secure a job offer from a healthcare facility in Dubai. Utilize online job portals, recruitment agencies, or direct applications to hospitals.
- With a job offer, your employer will sponsor your work visa and residency permit in Dubai.
- Upon arrival, undergo a medical fitness test and apply for an Emirates ID.
- Once all legal formalities are completed, you can start working as a doctor in Dubai.
Medical Residency in The UAE for Foreigners
You might ask: “Can I do my medical residency in UAE?” Yes, the opportunity is available to foreigners. Here’s the information you need:
Eligibility of Medical Residency for Foreigners
Foreign medical graduates can apply for medical residency programs in the UAE. However, the availability of positions and the level of competition can vary. Residency programs in the UAE typically range from 3 to 5 years.
- You must have graduated from a medical school recognized by the UAE’s medical regulatory bodies.
- You must pass the relevant licensing examination (DHA, HAAD, or MOH), depending on where you want to do your residency.
- Proficiency in English is crucial. However, Arabic proficiency is an asset but not mandatory.
- You must complete your internship (typically one year). Some residency programs might accept internship years completed abroad.
- Some residency programs may require additional work experience beyond the internship, although this varies.
- A certificate from the medical board or council where you’ve previously practiced indicates good standing and no malpractice history.
- Research various hospitals and medical institutions in the UAE offering residency programs.
- Select the program you are interested in.
- Prepare and apply, including your medical degree, transcripts, licensing exam results, CV, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.
- Submit your application and documents. Each institution has its own application portal and process.
- Selected candidates are usually invited for an interview. This could be in-person or virtual, depending on the institution and your location.
- Once accepted, you will need to obtain a residency visa sponsored by the institution.
- This involves submitting documents, including your passport, photos, and a medical fitness test result.
- Apply for a residency visa and Emirates ID, which are essential for legal residency and work in the UAE.
- You’ll officially enroll in the residency program after completing the administrative and legal requirements.
- Engage in continuous medical education and professional development as required by the program and the medical licensing authority.
What is the Salary of a Doctor in UAE Residency?
Residents in the UAE typically earn between AED 15,000 and AED 25,000 per month, depending on the hospital and specialty.
Does Dubai Give Citizenship to Doctors?
Based on the last immigration updates, Dubai does not offer citizenship to foreign doctors as a general policy. The UAE has strict citizenship laws, primarily granting citizenship by descent.
Is Dubai Good for Doctors?
Alright, we answered the question: “Can international doctors work in Dubai?” Now, we need to know if the UAE or Dubai is good for foreign doctors. Dubai is beneficial for doctors due to its advanced healthcare infrastructure, multicultural environment, competitive salaries, opportunities for professional development, and high standard of living. The city’s continuous investment in healthcare makes it an attractive location for medical professionals.
Do Doctors Get Paid a Lot in Dubai?
Doctors in Dubai typically receive competitive salaries, among the highest in the region. Compensation varies by specialty, experience, and the type of healthcare facility.
Which Type of Doctor Gets Paid the Most in the UAE?
Surgeons, particularly those specializing in neurosurgery, cardiac surgery, and plastic surgery, are among the highest-paid doctors in the UAE.
Can a Doctor Get a UAE Golden Visa?
Yes, a golden visa for doctors in Dubai is a possibility. This visa is for highly skilled professionals, including medical doctors, offering them a 10-year renewable residency.
Golden Visa for Doctors Requirements
- Applicants must be practicing medical doctors recognized for their professional contributions and expertise.
- They must hold a valid UAE medical license from the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), Abu Dhabi Department of Health, or the Ministry of Health and Prevention.
- Applicants should have a clean criminal record.
UAE Golden Visa Application Process
- You, as a doctor, can either be nominated for the Golden Visa by the respective health authority, or they can apply themselves if they meet the eligibility criteria.
- Submit your required documents, including your passport, current visa, medical license, CV, educational certificates, and proof of employment or practice in the UAE.
- Undergo a security check and ensure you have valid health insurance.
- The Federal Authority reviews the application for Identity and Citizenship.
- Once approved, the Golden Visa is issued, granting the doctor a 10-year renewable residency in the UAE.
Immigrate to the UAE as a Doctor: Let’s Recap
It will be a rewarding experience if you can immigrate to the UAE as a doctor and start working as a doctor there. By following the guidelines outlined in this blog, you can navigate the immigration process confidently and embrace the unique opportunities the UAE offers.
How do I move to Dubai as a doctor?
Obtain a medical degree, pass the DHA licensing exam, secure a job in Dubai, and get a work visa and residency permit.
How can I become a foreign doctor in the UAE?
Validate your medical degree through DataFlow, pass the relevant emirate’s licensing exam (DHA, HAAD, MOH), secure employment, and obtain a work visa.
How can a foreigner practice medicine in the UAE?
Verify qualifications, pass the licensing exam for the respective emirate, gain a job offer, and acquire the necessary work visa and residency.
Can Indian doctors practice in Dubai?
Yes, Indian doctors can practice in Dubai by passing the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) licensing exam and obtaining the necessary work visa and residency permit.
Can Indian doctors work in the UAE?
Yes, Indian doctors can work in the UAE by validating their medical degree through DataFlow, passing the relevant licensing exam (DHA, HAAD, or MOH), securing a job, and obtaining a work visa.