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United Arab Emirates – Maternity and Giving Birth

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a rapidly developing country with modern healthcare facilities. The UAE has a high standard of medical care, and childbirth is no exception. In this article, we will explore the most common options for giving birth in the UAE, how to register a birth in the country, and the attitudes and legislation surrounding abortion.

Options for Giving Birth in the UAE

The most common option for giving birth in the UAE is in a hospital. The majority of births take place in private hospitals, as opposed to public hospitals. Private hospitals in the UAE offer a high level of care and modern facilities, but they can be quite expensive. Public hospitals are less expensive, but they may not offer the same level of comfort and privacy as private hospitals.

Home births are not common in the UAE. This is partly due to cultural attitudes and partly due to the availability of modern medical facilities. However, some midwives in the UAE do offer home birth services for those who prefer this option.

Services Available to Pregnant Women

Pregnant women in the UAE have access to a range of medical services. Prenatal care is available in both public and private hospitals, and most women receive regular check-ups throughout their pregnancy. In addition, many private hospitals offer birthing classes and other resources to help women prepare for childbirth.

The UAE also has several government-sponsored initiatives to promote maternal and child health. For example, the Dubai Health Authority launched the “Mabrouk Ma Yak” program in 2019, which provides free prenatal care to all pregnant women in Dubai. This program includes regular check-ups, ultrasounds, and other medical services.

Registering a Birth in the UAE

All births in the UAE must be registered with the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA). The process of registering a birth in the UAE involves several steps:


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  1. Obtain a birth notification from the hospital or midwife attending the birth. This document will include the baby’s name, gender, date and place of birth, and the names of the parents.

  2. Apply for a birth certificate at the GDRFA office. You will need to provide the birth notification, the parents’ passports, and the baby’s passport (if applicable).

  3. After the birth certificate is issued, you can apply for a passport for the baby at the relevant embassy or consulate.

Attitudes and Legislation Surrounding Abortion

Abortion is illegal in the UAE except in cases where the mother’s life is at risk. There are no exceptions for cases of rape or incest. The penalty for having an abortion or performing one is imprisonment for up to five years.

The attitude towards abortion in the UAE is generally conservative, and there is little public discussion of the issue. However, the UAE has made some progress in recent years in terms of women’s reproductive rights. In 2019, the UAE announced that it would begin providing free fertility treatments to married couples who are struggling to conceive. This move was seen as a positive step towards supporting women’s reproductive health.

In conclusion, the UAE offers high-quality medical care and modern facilities for childbirth. Most births in the country take place in private hospitals, and pregnant women have access to a range of medical services. However, home births are not common in the UAE.

Registering a birth in the UAE involves obtaining a birth notification from the hospital or midwife attending the birth and applying for a birth certificate at the GDRFA office. Abortion is illegal in the UAE except in cases where the mother’s life is at risk, and there is little public discussion of the issue.


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YouTube Video UCB21b-C4O2aXm7H18_GsXMQ_nC_Fs6gU22U

Expat Focus International Healthcare Update January 2024

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