Arab Health 2020 Sectors



The U.A.E. healthcare sector is expanding rapidly to meet both the evolving needs of a growing population and the nation’s ambition to become a regional medical tourism hub. This rapid expansion is challenging the ability of the U.A.E. to both provide adequate medical personnel and contain costs. However, U.A.E. government entities have adopted a series of long-term initiatives, in particular the U.A.E.’s Vision 2021, to address these challenges and guide the sustainable growth of this sector.

The region also offers opportunities in the medical equipment sectors. U.S. companies will find the U.A.E. a ripe market for exports and a growing market for medical equipment sales; one in which they can potentially sign agreements to install and service their own medical devices (GE Healthcare). At the same time, U.S. companies will find clients that are eagerly pursuing the latest innovations in healthcare information technology, as IBM Watson Health, 3M, and Honeywell can attest.

Cardiovascular devices are another important segment of the U.A.E. medical device market, especially given the increasing incidence of cardiovascular disease due to sedentary lifestyles and obesity. This market is principally centered on interventional cardiology and cardiac rhythm management. Many of the key players in this segment also have significant U.A.E. operations.

  • Abbott: Dubai serves as a regional headquarters for Abbott, which is one of the world’s leading healthcare companies in medical devices as well as nutrition, pharmaceuticals, and diagnostics.
  • Abbott’s acquisition of St. Jude Medical created a combined company with best-in-class solutions across the areas of cardiovascular and neuromodulation
  • Medtronic: Dubai is the home for Medtronic’s headquarters for the Middle East & Africa, Central Asia & Turkey (MEACAT). These markets comprise 1,400 Medtronic professionals and produce approximately $1 billion in revenue
  • Medtronic is world renowned for its wide array of cardiac and vascular products
  • Johnson & Johnson: Dubai is the home of Johnson & Johnson Middle East FZ-LLC, which oversees the regional production of a broad range of products used primarily by healthcare professionals in the fields of cardiovascular disease as well as orthopedics, neurovascular, surgery, vision care, diabetes care, infection prevention, diagnostics, sports medicine, and aesthetics

One area in which the U.A.E. is poised to play a leading role in the future is 3D printing. In 2016, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, launched the ‘Dubai 3D Printing Strategy’ in order to exploit this technology for the “service of humanity” and promote the status of the U.A.E. and Dubai as a leading hub of 3D printing technology by the year 2030. One of the primary focus areas of this strategy is to the medical products sector, which could involve developing 3D printed teeth, bones, artificial organs, medical and surgical devices, and hearing aids. As a sign of Dubai’s seriousness in this regard, the Dubai Future Foundation created an “Office of the Future,” which is the first fully functional, inhabited 3D printed building ever.



The creation of a world-class healthcare infrastructure is a top priority for the government of the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) and, as a result, the sector has advanced and expanded significantly during the past few years. The World Health Organization determined that a third of adults in the U.A.E. are obese, and one out of five people live with diabetes. As the incidences of lifestyle diseases increase, these populations, supported by relatively high levels of income, will demand greater quality of healthcare. The government’s focus is on developing a healthcare infrastructure to address this demand.

For a country with one of the highest diabetes rates in the world (estimated at 25 percent of local population), glucose monitoring devices, insulin pens, and insulin syringes are becoming a significant segment of the market. There is demand for innovative technology to facilitate remote treatment of patients and medical device e-commerce. For example, AlMazroui Medical Group and Chemical Supplies started the first online store for medical equipment and supplies in U.A.E., called “Hejama,” in 2016.



If you have been keeping an eye on the U.A.E. healthcare market, consider this: In 2017, according to Business Monitor International, healthcare expenditures in the U.A.E. reached $17 billion and are expected to rise to $21.3 billion by 2021.

Population growth is one driver of this expansion. The World Bank projects that the population will grow from 9.4 million in 2017 to over 11 million by 2030. Demographic shifts are also a factor as the population begins to age. Lifestyle habits – smoking, poor nutrition, sedentary behavior – are contributing to a spike in cardiovascular diseases, obesity, diabetes and cancer. Poor habits are also affecting the population of young children.

As a result, U.A.E.’s healthcare sector and its partnerships with leading U.S. institutions have continued to develop:

  • The U.A.E. Embassy in Washington, D.C. and Johns Hopkins Medicine announced a new institute for stroke research and clinical care: The Sheikh Khalifa Stroke Institute
  • The U.A.E. Ambassador to the U.S. signed MOUs with several American hospitals:
    • The agreements will ensure enhanced medical care for designated patients and ongoing coordination between the American hospitals and their U.A.E. counterparts
    • American hospitals include:  Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, University of Chicago Hospitals, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, and Johns Hopkins Hospital

All of which have participated at Arab Health, an indicator of the show’s important to the region.

Medical tourism continues to be very much in demand. Attracting patients seeking treatment from across the globe, the U.A.E. has become a top location for higher-quality healthcare.

There is no better time to get involved in the U.A.E. And there is no better trade show in the world to get in front of the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), and Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA), etc. than Arab Health.

Book your space today and join American Medical Association, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Inova Health, Mayo Clinic, Northwestern Medicine, and Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in the USA Partnership Pavilion!

The healthcare market in the UAE is expected to grow by over 8.5% between 2018 to 2023.
Demand for new facilities and technologies is higher than ever before.
UAE authorities recognize the need for providing healthcare that is in line with the region’s Vision 2030 and its pursuit of healthcare excellence through technology and national eHealth projects.

The rising demand for better healthcare services in the region and global advancements in medical technologies have opened up a number of opportunities for information technology (IT) organizations to tap into this growing sector.

Implementation of automation in healthcare is projected to bring out better healthcare facilities, improved efficiency, and increase healthcare delivery quality.

  • Rising Labour Costs Driving a Need for Pharmacy Automation
  • Rising Government Support for Medical Automation

UAE’s healthcare landscape is continuing to evolve, with a wave of initiatives and technological advancements helping to merge gaps technology as an enabler of positive progress and improvements in clinical efficiency, as well as making everyday life for patients much more convenient.

  • Establishment of robotic pharmacies by the DHA
  • First and only EOS imaging system in the UAE. This system is an extremely advanced orthopaedic imaging technology that gives doctors a clear 3D view of the patient’s musculoskeletal system and helps them make life-changing decisions regarding the patient’s treatment
  • Robotic surgery is also becoming more prevalent in hospitals
  • Connected devices has allowed doctors to treat diseases more effectively and make the patient experience more convenient
  • Remote healthcare is in high demand and relevant to an increasingly sophisticated client base
  • Home healthcare is outperforming traditional health service providers such as hospitals and clinics. More and more medical technologies are home-based, with remote monitoring through apps and home-based diagnostics, freeing up beds for more advanced cases.



Population growth and increased life expectancy, plus a rising incidence of non-communicable lifestyle diseases such as obesity and diabetes, is driving escalating demand for healthcare services in the GCC region.

With the UAE healthcare market forecast to grow to Dh102 billion in 2021 from an estimated Dh69.4 billion this year, government bodies are looking to the private sector and to public-private partnerships (PPPs) to realize the goal of providing world-class healthcare, one of the six pillars of the UAE’s National Agenda in its Vision 2021.

Private players are being incentivized through PPPs to invest in and manage operations, while the public sector acts as the regulator. These partnerships, which range from the development or upgrade of medical facilities and the supply of medical technologies, to consultancy services in clinical management and best practice guidelines, will allow the public sector to enhance its services, improve the management of its resources, and cut costs.

Some examples: Dubai Health Authority (DHA) is planning a healthcare PPP program to establish radiology, cardiology and physiotherapy facilities across the city. In November 2018, DHA initiated the tendering process for a 110-bed Cardiac Centre of Excellence. The selected private sector entity will be responsible for designing, building, financing and operating the facility for a 25-year term.

PPPs are expected to increase in ambulatory care, home care, long-term stay and day-surgery centers, driven by the Dubai Health Authority strategy. The authority has entered into eight MoUs with private hospitals to exchange expertise with public hospitals to deliver quality healthcare.

The GCC has more than 700 healthcare projects worth Dh223.7 billion under various stages of development to meet the demand.

85% of this is being spent on hospital projects and rest towards clinics and research centers.



The present tech-savvy generation has encouraged the use of innovative healthcare information technology such as visits, digitization of electronic medical records (EMR), data analytics, and mobile applications for patient engagement. The adoption of such technologies has the potential to improve the quality of care and reduce the cost substantially for both patients as well as providers The U.A.E.’s Healthcare Information Technology (IT) market is set to grow swiftly in the coming years. This growth is partly driven by government initiatives around the digitization of electronic medical records. For the past decade, the U.A.E. has been gradually implementing electronic health record (EHR) and health information exchange (HIE) systems throughout the country that promise to help the country reduce duplication, medication errors, and the length of hospital stays; improve patient safety and outcomes; and inform more effective public health policies.

In 2008, the U.A.E. Ministry of Health launched the “Wareed” project to establish a ‘one patient, one record’ electronic health record system by linking all of its facilities in Dubai and the northern emirates. This project, which involved deploying Cerner Millennium systems in all Ministry hospitals and clinics, was managed by Dubai-based Hybrid Health Solutions and implemented by a consortium including U.A.E. Partnerships with U.S. Medical Equipment Companies.

Here are a few examples of American industry contributing to growth in this sector:

  • Medtronic signed a deal with the University of Sharjah in 2015 whereby Medtronic Academy, the educational wing of Medtronic, would collaborate with the University to educate regional physicians on Medtronic products and therapies as well as general cardiac topics
  • In 2008, Tawam Hospital in Al Ain became the first SEHA hospital to successfully implement Cerner Millennium healthcare information technology solutions at its facility

Meanwhile, in Dubai, the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) embarked on an electronic health records system known as “Salama.” This system, which was announced in February 2016, has created one electronic record for each resident who uses a public hospital in that emirate. The Dubai Health Authority now intends to extend this electronic health records system to private facilities in the emirate as well through its NABIDH (Network and Analysis Backbone for Integrated Dubai Health) initiative. This initiative will ultimately enable the creation of a single unified medical record for each individual in Dubai by linking the information contained in all public and private health care facilities.

The U.A.E. is also improving healthcare through the increasing adoption of telemedicine, which enables both patients to consult medical professionals and medical professionals to consult each other from a distance. This has reduced hospital visits, limited the movement of patients between hospitals, and extended healthcare services to more remote locations.