Al Wasl Hospital says patients without prior bookings who approach the hospital for emergency deliveries will have to pay Dh5,000 to open a file at the hospital. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Emergency labour cases at Al Wasl Hospital are being charged as much as patients who are registered at the hospital from the beginning of their pregnancy.

"Unbooked patients have been requested to pay more than Dh12,000 [towards] the cost of delivery at Al Wasl Hospital," an official of Dubai Health Authority (DHA) said.

Khalil Sharaf, head of the admission section at the hospital, told Gulf News that the charges are meant for expatriate women. "The cost of delivery cases has been increased last year from Dh3,000 to around Dh8,000," he said.

He added that patients without prior bookings who approach the hospital for emergency deliveries would also have to pay an additional Dh5,000, taking the total payable bill to between Dh8,000 and Dh13,000 depending on the nature of individual cases, he said. The extra charge of Dh5,000 was to open a file at the hospital, he added. "Those patients must pay as good as those who are registered at the hospital," he said.

Prosecution threat

A family that is unable to pay all charges will be denied the baby's birth certificate, he added. "The father will be reported to police and will be prosecuted."

Sharaf said the new cost of delivery at Al Wasl Hospital took effect last August 22.

Mohammad, from Sudan, told Gulf News that his wife who was pregnant with their second child used to visit Al Qasimi Hospital in Sharjah during her pregnancy. "I took my wife to the emergency at Al Wasl hospital as she was in pain while we were in Dubai."

"I was asked by the staff at the emergency to go to the admission to pay the deposit," he said, complaining of the Dh5,000 deposit.

"I am a low income employee and I cannot afford to pay Dh13,000 for my wife's delivery. I was not told at all that the cost will be that much. I was informed that it will cost me around Dh7,000 and I paid Dh5,000 in advance," he said.

He said when he came to get his wife and baby discharged from the hispital, he was asked to pay Dh12,700.

Mohammad said that his son Khalid who was born early this month was denied his birth certificate. "I am a father of two small children and I cannot pay the extra Dh5,000 for the opening of the file," he said.

Cost factor

Normal baby delivery fee at Dubai Hospital is around Dh9,000 but for patients without prior bookings, it is double — around Dh 18,000.

Cost at Al Baraha hospital is around Dh6,000 but it depends on space.

Delivery at private hospitals costs around Dh6,000 to Dh8,000 in normal cases and more than Dh15,000 for complicated cases.