Unvaccinated UAE government workers to undergo weekly Covid-19 tests

Employees must pay for PCR tests themselves unless they present a medical report exempting them from being vaccinated

UAE government employees who have not been vaccinated against Covid-19 must undergo a PCR test every week.

On Monday, the Federal Authority for Government Human Resources updated rules announced this month that required unvaccinated federal government workers to be tested every two weeks.

The rule, which requires the employees to pay for their own tests, is part of government efforts to limit the spread of the virus, preserve the health of employees and keep workplaces safe.

Employees who have received both doses of the vaccine are exempt.

Previously, the authority said the seven-day testing rule also applied to employees of outsourced and public services companies who were employed on a full-time basis.

Employees from advisory and expert services companies that deal with government bodies on a one-off basis will need to present a negative PCR test result that is no more than three days old, state news agency Wam reported.

Unvaccinated government workers will be expected to pay for tests themselves unless they present a medical report exempting them from taking the vaccine owing to an illness or health condition.

In those cases, the employer must bear the cost of testing, the authority said.

The vaccine is available for free at government health centres across the country, as well as at many private hospitals.

Federal ministries are to encourage their employees to be inoculated, especially older staff or those with chronic diseases.