This chapter includes the following articles.
As demand for medical treatment rises, the health care sector in RAK has to meet new demands and challenges. Population growth, which climbed to 8% between 2008 and 2010, has necessitated more health care investment and infrastructure upgrades. Indeed, health sector costs in the UAE have tripled in the past decade and, as RAK’s citizens have free access to medical care at public institutions, the government is paying for the bulk of this rise. Yet RAK is meeting these challenges, opening two new hospitals and implementing a number of health care facility upgrades. Moreover, RAK is positioning itself as a medical tourism centre. Hospitality and good care with low prices are key components. For example, a nationwide mandatory insurance programme is expected to take effect, redistributing health-related costs between the government and citizens. Steps are also being taken to increase the number of Emirati students studying medicine and nursing to reduce the labour shortage, and awareness campaigns are promoting the long-term benefits of a healthy lifestyle.