Dubai, United Arab Emirates: The Dubai Health Authority (DHA) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Visa, the world's leading digital payments company, with the aim of enhancing Dubai's competitiveness as an ideal destination for health tourism.

The agreement was signed on behalf of the Dubai Health Authority by Dr. Marwan Al Mulla, Executive Director of the Health Regulation Sector, and on behalf of Visa, by Dr. Saeeda Jaffar, Senior Vice President and Group Country Manager for GCC.

According to the agreement, Visa will work in cooperation with its bank partners to provide cardholders with a set of exclusive discounts on medical services provided by members of the Dubai Health Experience (DXH) through the health tourism website Visa card holders will be able to choose between a range of medical services and procedures, book appointments with doctors, and plan their treatment itineraries.

Phases of implementing the agreement

The agreement will be implemented in two phases. The first phase targets Visa card holders from the State of Kuwait to benefit from discounts on services in (6) clinics and hospitals in the United Arab Emirates: Al Zahra Hospital, Adam Vital Hospital, Neuro Spinal Hospital, Burjeel Hospital, Dr. Sulaiman Al Habib Hospital and King’s College Hospital.

While the second phase aims to provide discounts to Visa card holders in other countries to cover all hospitals and clinics affiliated with the Dubai Health Experience Group (DXH). It will also work with travel agents, airlines and hospitality service providers to obtain various discounts and other offers.

Dr. Marwan Al Mulla, Executive Director of the Health Regulatory Sector at DHA, stressed the importance of signing this memorandum, which comes as part of the authority's continuous plans and efforts to build broad horizons of strategic partnerships with various local, regional and global institutions to enhance Dubai's ability and global competitiveness as an ideal destination for treatment and hospitalization seekers.

Dr. Al Mulla referred to the effective programs adopted by Dubai to activate the health tourism movement in cooperation with its strategic partners, which contributed during the past year 2021 to attracting 630,000 international health tourists, their medical expenses amounting to about 730 million dirhams, which are record numbers in light of the exceptional circumstances the world is going through due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which cast negative shadows on various vital sectors, including the health sector.

He also expressed his confidence in the positive results that the memorandum of understanding with Visa will achieve, and its role in supporting and revitalizing the health tourism movement to Dubai because of the discounts and multiple benefits it provides to patients from different countries of the world, and enabling them to benefit from high-quality medical services in various health facilities in the Emirate.

For her part, Dr. Saeeda Jaffar, Senior Vice President and Group Country Manager for GCC, Visa, said: “Our strategic agreement with DHA will increase Dubai's attractiveness as a preferred destination for global health tourism, and as a center for first-class healthcare facilities.  Through this first-of-its-kind strategic alliance, we want to highlight the importance of making health a priority and ensure that our cardholders can avail exclusive discounts on high-quality medical services, as well as enjoy the benefits offered by Dubai Health Experience member.”