Dubai’s Product Classification Demystified: From Medicines to Cosmetics

Classifying Health Products and Pharmaceutical Products:
Product Classification | Dubai | UAE

Health products include products containing minerals; products containing vitamins; herbal products and other products which contain specific substances e.g. amino acids, charcoal lipids like omega 3, and certain antiseptics (‘Health Products’).

A pharmaceutical product is classified as either a medicine or a health product, based on the Pharmaceutical Product Classification Guideline by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) UAE.

Product Classification in Dubai is important as it helps the marketers in deciding which of the methods and strategies will help in promoting the business’s product or service.

Mainly the Products are classified by the Ministry of Health and Prevention as below: 

1. Medicine 

2. Health Product 

  • Herbal product
  • Combination products (Herbal/Vitamins/Mineral/Others)
  • Others

3. Alternative and Complementary Medicine 

  • Homeopathic medication
  • Ayurveda medicine
  • Others

4. Others

Any product enlisted by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) must mention the standard explanation “To consult a health care expert before using it in case of lactation or pregnancy or under medication”.

Upon classification will issue an official letter of the product classification. A proper process of product enrollment is to be followed thereafter. Products that are listed under the control Pharmaceutical Products Regulation Office should be registered. These products need a complete assessment to ensure their quality, efficacy, and safety. This category includes the herbal product, medicines as well as high-risk health products.

Medication is characterized as follows: 
  • Any substance or combination of substances introduced as having properties for preventing or treating disease in human beings; or
  • Any substance or combination of substances that might be used in or administered to humans either with the view of correcting, restoring, or changing physiological functions by exerting an immunological, pharmacological, or metabolic action or to make a medical diagnosis.

Herbal products: Are health products containing as active substances herbal preparations or herbal substances, alone or in combination as completed, labeled products in pharmaceutical dose forms except for parenteral forms.

A herbal substance is entire, fragmented or cut plants, algae, plant parts, lichen in an unprocessed, generally dried form however sometimes fresh.

Certain exudates that haven’t been subjected to a particular treatment are additionally viewed as herbal substances. Herbal substances are decisively characterized by the plant part used as well as the botanical name as indicated by the binomial system (species, variety, genus, and author).

A herbal preparation is acquired by subjecting herbal substances to treatments, for example, extraction, expression, distillation, concentration, purification, or fermentation. These include comminuted or powdered herbal substances, extracts, tinctures, essential oils, expressed juices as well as processed exudates.

Combination product (Vitamin/Minerals/Others) Products containing one or more than one herbal ingredients added to one or more vitamins or minerals or others which are shown for adults or children ( over 1 year of age)/adolescent.

Food Supplement:
 To consider a product as Food Supplement it should meet at least one of the accompanying criteria or type of product:
  • A product containing mineral/vitamin underneath or equivalent to the upper intake level as defined by the Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) will be considered as a food supplement.
  • Any product enlisted as a food supplement (mineral and multivitamin only) in the country of origin.
  • Products that contain herbs which are not in pharmaceuticals dose form and have gone by any manufacturing procedure, for example, grinding extraction, packaging, or some other manufacturing procedure.
  • Energy drink products must comply with energy drinks recommendations.
  • Juices/powder etc. products to get nutritional support persons as well as athletes who routinely practice workout.
Cosmetic Products:
Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) will be considered accompanying as cosmetics
  • Creams, lotions, emulsions, gels as well as oils for the skin
  • Tinted bases
  • Face mask
  • Depilatories
  • Make-up powders, hygienic powders, after-bath powders, etc
  • Deodorant soaps, toilet soaps, etc
  • Eau de cologne, perfumes, and toilet waters
  • Bath and shower preparations
  • Anti- per spirants and deodorants
  • Alcohol hand sanitizers
  • Shaving products
  • Haircare products
  • Products for making up and removing make-up from the eyes and face
  • Products intended for application to lips
  • Products for care of mouth and teeth
  • Products for make-up and nail care
  • Products for external intimate hygiene that don’t contain ingredients which contain antimicrobial activity
  • Sunbath products
  • Products for tanning without sun
  • Products for Anti-wrinkle
  • Eye decorative cosmetic products
  • Aromatic as well as herbal oils which have one or more of oils which are extracted from plants that have non-nutritional claims and are used externally
  • Topical products having organic acids (Alpha-hydroxyl acids) in the total concentration of organic acids up to 10 percent
  • Insect repellents in direct contact with human being skin
Combined medical device:
Combined medical device is a medical device which is mixed with the pharmaceutical or biological or chemical materials and its principal intended action is mechanical or physical.
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