Een zorgverstrekker vinden
Bent u op zoek naar een ziektekostenverzekering?
Kijk hoe u uw zorgverlener kunt vinden met MSH
Bent u al lid?
Log dan in om uw zorgverlener te vinden
Salesteam voor particulieren
Van 9.00 - 18.00 uur (CET)
Neem contact met ons op via e-mail
Salesteam voor bedrijven
Van 9.00 - 18.00 uur (CET)
Neem contact met ons op via e-mail
Snelle toegang
Living in Qatar gives you access to an innovative and pioneering healthcare system that ranks among the best in the world. Healthcare services are available to both Qatari residents and expatriates, provided that you have health insurance. 
If you are planning to move to Doha or if you will be staying there for a short time, you will find all the information you need about Qatar’s healthcare system below. 

  Table of contents

Understanding Qatar’s healthcare system

Healthcare formalities for expatriates

Access to healthcare in Qatar

Healthcare in Qatar

Technology and innovation in Qatar’s healthcare system

Life in Qatar: health issues and challenges

Advice for good health in Qatar

Understanding Qatar’s healthcare system


Qatar boasts a healthcare system based on excellence, with cutting-edge facilities and highly qualified healthcare professionals. The majority of doctors speak English, which makes it much easier for foreign residents to communicate their needs.
The country has focused on healthcare to enhance its appeal and has invested heavily in modern technology and conventional methods to provide a quality of care that meets most requirements.

The figures are significant: more than $6 billion have been invested in the sector since 2017. The country’s aim is to attract patients from across the globe who come for long or short stays or to move there permanently and who take advantage of the system to obtain healthcare. Qatar is a highly attractive medical tourism destination.


How Qatar’s healthcare system works?


Qatar’s healthcare system is one of the most efficient in the Middle East, providing highly satisfactory services both in the public and private sectors.

The public system, overseen by the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), supports a wide range of healthcare services which are generally free of charge or heavily subsidized. Patients must hold a Health Card to access these services and pay 100 riyals to obtain one.

The healthcare system is regulated by the Supreme Council of Health, and the mandatory health insurance system called “Seha” covers basic healthcare in public health facilities. Once in the country, expatriates must enroll in this national health insurance system and enjoy valid insurance coverage to access public healthcare.
Expatriates are recommended to take out separate private healthcare insurance to obtain appointments and treatment quickly and access a premium-quality medical network.


Healthcare for women and children


In Qatar, healthcare for women and children is provided by various healthcare facilities, including Sidra Medicine. This private facility offers specialist care and strives to promote quality health education. To meet this objective, the center has 400 beds for women and children. Sidra Medicine is also a medical teaching center and biomedical research facility.

Pregnant women can access a variety of services ranging from pre- and post-natal care to specialist maternity care. Healthcare for children and young people is also well organized, with access to free or subsidized healthcare services for residents.
  • While the country strives to provide quality healthcare, other services still need to be developed. There are challenges related to women’s rights, particularly with regard to their access to certain healthcare services.

Healthcare formalities for expatriates

The healthcare formalities required to move to Qatar begin before your departure. According to the French Foreign Ministry, you must take out medical/repatriation insurance before arriving in Qatar.


Is insurance mandatory in Qatar?


In addition to medical/repatriation insurance, if you are planning to stay in Qatar for more than one month you must take out health insurance online before arriving in the country.

If you are planning a long stay or are intending to submit a residency application, you must provide bloodwork (HIV, tuberculosis, hepatitis B and C). If you test positive for one of these conditions, you will not be permitted to move to Qatar.


What are the consequences of arriving without insurance?

 If you fail to take out healthcare insurance before arriving in Qatar you may face the following problems:
  • Emergency medical treatment may be extremely expensive without insurance coverage,
  • If you do not have insurance, you cannot access medical services in public facilities, which all require a Health Card, 
  • For stays exceeding one month, local authorities require evidence of valid health insurance coverage to authorize entry into the country, 
  • Not taking out insurance may result in legal issues, as Qatar made coverage mandatory in 2023.


Necessary vaccinations


No vaccinations are required upon entry into the country, but it is recommended that you are up to date with your vaccinations to prevent infectious diseases.

Prior to your departure to Qatar, make sure you are up to date with your vaccinations. Recommended vaccinations include those against diphtheria, tetanus, polio, hepatitis A and B, typhoid and whooping cough.

A rabies vaccination should also be considered, particularly for residents. The hepatitis A vaccination must be administered 15 days prior to departure.


Health risks


The health risks in Qatar are relatively limited. While the healthcare system is of high quality and enjoys a good supply of medication, treatment may be expensive in private healthcare facilities.

Despite the high-quality healthcare system in Qatar, the health situation may change. Difficult climate conditions such as extreme heat may pose a risk to human health. It is therefore essential that measures are taken to avoid dehydration and heat stroke, particularly during the hottest season (from June to October):

  • Drink lots of water to avoid dehydration,
  • Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun during the hottest times of day (from 12pm to 3pm),
  • Use a high-factor sunscreen.

To find all our advice about maintaining good health in Qatar, read the end of this article.

COVID-19 in Qatar


Qatar implemented a range of measures to address the Covid-19 pandemic and protect its residents and visitors. The authorities introduced strict health protocols, including in particular travel restrictions, mandatory testing on arrival and quarantine for persons arriving from certain countries.

These measures have recently been relaxed for some countries. However, despite efforts to manage the crisis, the country has experienced another spike in cases. While there is no longer a major crisis in Qatar, you must stay informed of the latest health guidelines when planning to travel there.

We therefore recommend that you complete a full series of COVID-19 vaccinations and any additional dose recommended in your country of residence prior to traveling.

Access to healthcare in Qatar


Consulting a doctor



If you need a doctor in an emergency, ambulance services are available 24/7. If you are a resident, you can use your Health Card to find a doctor through the Supreme Council of Health’s online directory of practitioners. This service lists all licensed doctors in Qatar, as well as their scope of practice and location.

Lists of healthcare professionals are also available on the website of the French Embassy in Qatar or on
In the event of an emergency, MSH has a network of private healthcare service providers including hospitals and doctors available in your region.

For remote consultations, MSH has a partnership with state-of-the-art teleconsultation services:
Our partners offer you consultations with specialists in the language of your choice, at any time of night or day. These consultations are fully confidential.


Purchasing medication

In Qatar, medication is primarily purchased in pharmacies, which are often located in healthcare facilities. Residents can obtain subsidized medication with their Health Cards in public-sector pharmacies.

Please note that some types of medication may not be available, even if they have been prescribed, and that the prices of drugs may also vary according to the type (generic or brand) and where you are purchasing.

It is therefore advisable to take a well-stocked first-aid kit and any prescription drugs you may need with you. Some over-the-counter drugs, such as cold and cough medication, are controlled substances and require a prescription.

To purchase medication abroad, it is recommended that you contact your embassy or health insurance provider for advice. Counterfeit drugs may be common, especially as the pharmaceutical industry is not strictly regulated.

If you take specific medication, it is preferable to request an equivalent of the drug you usually take from your registered doctor before traveling to Qatar.

Healthcare in Qatar


Healthcare facilities in Qatar

The public sector is primarily managed by the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), which includes various hospitals, primary care centers and specialist clinics throughout the country.

The private sector also has a wide range of hospitals and clinics, including Aster Hospital in Doha, the Dr. Maher Abbas Polyclinic, Al-Ahli Hospital, the German Dental and Dermatology Centre, the Al-Hayat medical center, the Reem medical center, the HMC Heart Hospital, the Cuban Hospital in Zekreet, the Atlas Polyclinic and the Surgical Specialty Center.

There are also specialist facilities, such as the DOC Medical Center, renowned for its services in orthopedics, rheumatology, neurology, neuropsychology, physical therapy, chiropractic treatment and dentistry.

In short, the healthcare services in Qatar are among the best in the Middle East, with qualified practitioners and modern infrastructure.

Technology and innovation in Qatar’s healthcare system


The use of artificial intelligence in the health sector

In Qatar, artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming increasingly important in the healthcare sector. Several initiatives have been launched in this field to improve the quality of care and the efficiency of healthcare services.

For example, the Avey application launched in 2017 and developed at the Qatar Science and Technology Park (QSTP) is an all-in-one health application that is currently used by more than 1.2 million people. This application uses AI as an aid to monitor and manage different aspects of the user’s health.

AI is also used to improve the speed and precision of diagnoses and screening for illnesses, and to facilitate clinical care. It also plays a key role in medical research and the development of new drugs.

In the field of education, medical training courses are increasingly teaching about technology to support the development of new professions that combine the two areas of expertise.  

Mobile health applications


In Qatar, there is an increasing number of mobile applications devoted to health, designed to help users manage their health and access care more easily. Currently, these applications are becoming key everyday healthcare tools as they offer users quick and easy access to a wide range of healthcare services.

There are many other healthcare applications, such as PharmEasy for general health, Pedi STAT for pediatric emergencies, and OQIC Medical for health insurance.

MSH also has a mobile application you can use in Qatar, so that you can manage your health as effectively as possible. 
The application includes various services, such as submitting and monitoring your claims, geolocating nearby healthcare professionals and accessing a comprehensive medical library. The application also enables you to manage your MSH healthcare plan (insurance card, coverage, etc.). 


Hospitals and technological innovations

Technological advances in the healthcare sector are not limited to the use of AI or mobile applications. Hospitals in Qatar use cutting-edge technologies to improve the efficacy of treatment and patient comfort.
One example is automated work flows achieved through robotics, a very popular trend in technology at the moment. These innovations bring about improved resource management and save medical staff considerable time.

The country is also leveraging international partnerships to meet its healthcare objectives. The Hamad Medical Corporation works with international partners to foster the sharing of ideas and technological developments. This contributes to promoting innovation across borders, both in the public and private sectors.

Concepts such as smart hospitals are also emerging in Qatar. These forward-looking hospitals are designed to assist healthcare professionals and patients, combining the use of information and communication technologies with advanced architectural designs to create more efficient and pleasant healthcare environments.

Life in Qatar: health issues and challenges


The Qatari healthcare system has undergone major reforms in recent years. The aim is to provide international-standard healthcare services to residents. However, despite these efforts, Qatar’s health sector faces several challenges.
  • Firstly, the country has experienced rapid population growth, resulting in increased use of healthcare services. To meet these growing needs, Qatar has invested in the health sector and has rolled out initiatives to promote health and prevention.
  • Like many Gulf States, Qatar must also address an increase in the number of cases of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, which require expensive long-term care.
  • The Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 also played a role, placing a strain on the entire healthcare system and highlighting the need for better health crisis preparedness. The country was forced to implement precautionary measures to contain the spread of the virus and ensure its population’s safety.
  • In Qatar, public health is managed primarily by the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) which administers various hospitals and clinics across the country. However, the country’s management of the health crisis has been criticized, which raises questions regarding the efficacy of its public health system.

To meet these challenges, Qatar has striven to promote health innovation by investing in research and development and by working with international partners. The country has also taken steps to reinforce its public healthcare system by improving access to care and introducing prevention and health promotion programs.

How the Qatari health system is funded

The funding of the health sector is based mainly on public funding, with a considerable contribution from the private sector. Residents, be they Qatari or expatriates, can access public healthcare provided that they sign up for the national health insurance system (Seha) and have valid health insurance coverage. 

The healthcare services law No. 22 of 2021 introduced mandatory health insurance coverage for non-Qatari employees and their families and foreign visitors. This law is significant for companies operating in Qatar.

Qatar has entered into international partnerships to fund its healthcare system, such as the Global Fund to fight infectious diseases. The country has also invested in the construction of hospitals and primary health centers abroad through its Qatar Fund for Development.


Future projects for healthcare in Qatar

Future plans for the Qatari healthcare sector are particularly ambitious. The country is planning several large-scale projects that will further bolster the high standard of its healthcare system.

Firstly, Qatar is working with Algeria and Germany to build a new hospital. Through this alliance, it wishes to strengthen its existing medical infrastructure.

An initiative of the Qatar Foundation, the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) has also opened subsidy requests to support innovative healthcare projects.

In the field of scientific research, the Qatar Genome Programme is showing strong growth. It is an ambitious program that aims to understand the DNA of Qatar’s inhabitants with a view to better preventing and treating disease.

Nationally, Qatar has launched a diabetes strategy to improve screening and treatment of this disease.

Advice for good health in Qatar

Here are a few tips to stay in good health once you are in Qatar:


  • Most importantly, hydration is key in this arid country. It is generally recommended that you drink 1-2 liters of water each day. Given the hot climate, you should also opt for light clothing that is loose-fitting and made with breathable fabrics.
  • In public areas, avoid close contact with people with symptoms such as coughs or sneezing. Hand hygiene is also essential: wash your hands regularly or use a disinfectant. To avoid “traveler's diarrhea”, prefer bottled water and avoid eating raw or undercooked foods.
  • Given the intense sun exposure in Qatar, wear a hat, good-quality sunglasses and apply a high-factor suncream regularly to avoid sunburn and heat stroke.
  • Lastly, for a holistic approach to health, you can explore the conventional and alternative treatment methods available in Qatar in addition to modern technology.

For more information

Find out about other countries' healthcare system

Meer weten?
Ontdek in een paar klikken welk pakket voor jou de beste keus is
Neem contact op met ons team van specialisten
We zijn er 24/7 om je in je eigen taal te helpen