Sharjah rule annoys health card seekers

SHARJAH — The rule that demands an applicant should furnish a tenancy contract in his name before obtaining a health card in Sharjah should be scrapped as most people are living in sharing accommodations, say people applying for health cards in Sharjah Medical District.


Asma Ali Zain

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Published: Fri 18 Nov 2005, 11:58 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 8:42 PM

Speaking to Khaleej Times, residents of Sharjah, who share accommodations, say that the prerequisite by the Department of Health, Sharjah, to furnish a photocopy of tenancy contract proving that the applicant is a resident of the emirate of Sharjah in order to obtain a health card from the department is not pragmatic because many people share apartments.

Voicing concern, they said that the law would also encourage fraud.

“I recently sponsored my wife and took up a sharing accommodation because I cannot afford a separate apartment. After her residence visa was stamped, I applied for her health card and paid the required amount. When I was due to pick up her card after I paid Dh540, the authorities refused to hand over her card saying that I needed to furnish a tenancy contract proving that I am a resident of Sharjah before I can be given the card,” says Aslam Zawahir.

Questioning the relevance, Zawahir said that while sharing a residence, the owner of the apartment could not claim in any written form that he was sharing the flat with another person. “There is no law that allows sharing of a name in a tenancy contract, so how will I prove that I stay in Sharjah while I am sharing a flat,” asked Zawahir.

Shaikh Mohammed bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Assistant Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Director of the Sharjah Medical District, admitted that he was not aware of this problem as it had not been highlighted before.

“Presenting a tenancy contract before obtaining a health card is a prerequisite in all emirates. But as this issue has not come to my notice before, I can suggest that people who face such a problem should be allowed to present any document that can prove that he/she resides or works in Sharjah. These documents can include a letter from the company or any bill,” said Shaikh Mohammed Al Qasimi.

Nahil, a PRO for a company in Sharjah, also confirmed that the tenancy contract was a must.

“There is no way out, an applicant needs to prove that he is residing or working in the emirate before he can obtain a health card from the Sharjah Medical District. Or he might provide a contract that says that he is sharing an apartment,” he adds.

According to Zawahir, this rule was also encouraging fraud.

“I know several people who forge the contracts. They put their name onto a contract, have a photocopy made, and give it to the health authorities. What is the point of asking for a copy of a contract that can be forged or be a source of trouble for the residents,” he questioned.

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