The government of Kuwait recently passed legislation requiring all visitors to have health insurance for the duration of their stay in Kuwait.

Law No.15 of 2019 has been published in the Official Gazette and should be implemented in the next few months.

Key details

Foreigners constitute two-thirds of the Kuwaiti population. Expatriates living in Kuwait are required to contribute to the state insurance scheme in order to have access to public medical facilities. Employed expatriates typically have private health insurance for access to private facilities and care inside and outside of Kuwait.

Prior to the new legislation, visitors were not required to have health insurance when traveling to Kuwait. The new law aims to prevent foreign nationals who are staying for a short period of time from taking advantage of the affordable public health care system to get expensive, high-quality medical treatments. It is expected to decrease congestion in public hospitals and avoid the common situation where visitors leave the country without paying their medical charges.

Next steps

Multinational companies should monitor the implementation timeline of the change and ensure their staff traveling for business in Kuwait comply with the new requirement.