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Special Report: Phuket hospitals facing huge losses from uninsured patients

209 posts in this topic

One can only wonder, how much profit the hospitals in Thailand are making from un-necessary prescriptions or treatments of tourists.  In example; how many hospitals here are happy to prescribe appendectomy surgery on foreigners with any stomach infection, as long as they just receive payment?

If you have visited a hospital in Thailand, you will most likely have been provided with loads of medicine, which in most cases were not necessary.

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43 minutes ago, simoh1490 said:

Sorry to jump in but I live here and I do pay tax, every year I spend at least 800k baht and 7% of that is sales tax. That's 56,000 baht per year, in addition to the tax on houses, cars and other large purchases from time to time. I calculate that I pay around 7k baht a month on average in Thai tax, about half the average national wage, just like many many other expat retirees.

 

56,000 baht a year doesn't cover half the cost of a decent medical policy, especially for someone of retirement age.  

 

You made your contribution to health care your entire working life back home.  Then expect to come to Thailand in your golden years and have it taken care of by paying a pittance into the economy?

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14 hours ago, the guest said:

If the government was smart, it would make it compulsory for all foreigners to have full insurance before a visa would be granted. It solves a lot of problems.

Why can't Thailand adopt the same procedure like the EU countries and many other countries in the world, insisting on tourists proving having medical insurance before being allowed in. This would be in the interest of Thailand as well as that of the tourists. They would know that in case of accident or illness they would enjoy one of the best medical treatment available worldwide.

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Just now, impulse said:

 

56,000 baht a year doesn't cover half the cost of a decent medical policy, especially for someone of retirement age.  

 

You made your contribution to health care your entire working life back home.  Then expect to come to Thailand in your golden years and have it taken care of by paying a pittance into the economy?

I'm not suggesting that at all, I'm just pointing out to an earlier poster that I (and other expats) pay tax here whereas he claimed we pay no tax at all.

 

But I do disagree that tax represents a pittance, it's half the average monthly wage each month, just on tax.

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Far too many posters in this thread thinking the word "foreigners' must mean western expats or farangs and that they are being held responsible for this "problem", it doesn't and you aren't, the problem starts with the 150,000 Burmese workers in Phuket who have no health insurance and no money to pay medical bills.

 

I think it's quite conceited on the part of posters who automatically assume their race must be the source of the problem and shows how little they understand about their surroundings here.

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2 hours ago, the guest said:

3 million, hardly. Sorry to say Thailand is for Thais, and come here with your conditions expecting the taxpayer to pay for your medical bills?  This isn't Europe.

Lol! I'm pretty sure any foreigner having spent 5 seconds in Thailand knows it isn't Europe. I guess if they did they wouldn't be here.

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1 hour ago, simoh1490 said:

The following article states there is over 300,000 migrant workers in Phuket, half of whom have no medical insurance and cannot/do not pay their bills - the bill for treating migrant workers by the three main governement hospitals in 2016 was a whopping 94 million baht. A write off of 2.7 million baht per year is paltry  when you consider those numbers: http://www.nationmultimedia.com/news/national/30305745

The Burmese Mother of two has some wonderful "friends" very kind of them to lend her money at 20% interest, wonder if that is per month also.

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...have read that foreigners' passports are held...until they pay...???

 

...also...might it have to do something with the 'pricing'....???

 

...not enough details to paint the foreigners the bad guys responsible for the fiscal problems of Thai hospitals...

 

...we did read that there are hundreds of Thai hospitals 'in trouble'......

 

...and like several posters mentioned....with all the extras being charged to tourists 'on arrival'.....where does all that money go...

 

...national park heads allegedly pocketed hundreds of millions each year...for years.....too....

 

...if borders are open...then plans should be put in place....

 

..statistically...the number of deaths...injuries...etc...of foreigners......is incomprehensible....!!!

 

 

 

 

 

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and just who do you think is going to have to pay for this?

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ID: 60   Posted (edited)

What happened with the mandatory personal accident insurance policy up on arrival?immigration could just sell this up on each extension to foreign visitors .1000 bht a month for visitors to cover for them  till max 500,000 bht for any accident hospital bill in Thailand.

Edited by Destiny1990

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18 hours ago, smedly said:

This country makes a huge amount of money from tourists, it is a vital part of GDP and has been the case for decades, the problem is that there are no safety standards or at least they are not enforced making Thailand (no matter how much they claim otherwise) and extremely dangerous place to holiday.

 

The costs quoted in the OP are not only tiny but are very likely exaggerated, when you consider the actual cost in terms of labour and materials without profit it is no where near what they are quoting.

 

Yes people should have insurance when they go on holiday but equally there is a duty of care to keep visitors safe when they visit Thailand, when they are injured through no fault of their own then Thailand should be willing to step up and compensate. 

 

They have gotten away with this for far too long, they have had decades to improve things but instead stuffed the money in their greedy pockets showing no consideration to improve their health and safety.........and yes I for once agree in this instance of that commonly used Thai phrase - well if they hadn't come to Thailand it wouldn't have happened so it must be their fault, might be time for people to rethink their holiday destinations.

 

If a Thai goes to the UK on holiday they will be treated in hospital like everyone else, the difference being that the likelihood of something happening to them is vastly different.

 

 

So a few million here and there .................so what, you are making trillions in tourism.

If you go to the UK you do not necessarily get the treatment for free they will certainly treat you and will not turn patients away however they will seek to recover the costs if you are not a resident or other categories as defined  

Recently watched a documentary where it showed hospitals have big problems with unpaid bills from overseas visitors to the extent that many have a staff member whose role is to try and get the money.

Australia  has a reciprocol arrangement whereby citizens can get emergency treatment ( as defined) however does not apply to Thailand.

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18 hours ago, smedly said:

This country makes a huge amount of money from tourists, it is a vital part of GDP and has been the case for decades, the problem is that there are no safety standards or at least they are not enforced making Thailand (no matter how much they claim otherwise) and extremely dangerous place to holiday.

 

The costs quoted in the OP are not only tiny but are very likely exaggerated, when you consider the actual cost in terms of labour and materials without profit it is no where near what they are quoting.

 

Yes people should have insurance when they go on holiday but equally there is a duty of care to keep visitors safe when they visit Thailand, when they are injured through no fault of their own then Thailand should be willing to step up and compensate. 

 

They have gotten away with this for far too long, they have had decades to improve things but instead stuffed the money in their greedy pockets showing no consideration to improve their health and safety.........and yes I for once agree in this instance of that commonly used Thai phrase - well if they hadn't come to Thailand it wouldn't have happened so it must be their fault, might be time for people to rethink their holiday destinations.

 

If a Thai goes to the UK on holiday they will be treated in hospital like everyone else, the difference being that the likelihood of something happening to them is vastly different.

 

 

So a few million here and there .................so what, you are making trillions in tourism.

Yes, we all know Thai safety standards are not up to standards but do not blame Thais for the actions of some 20 year old who hires a big bike while sobber and then rides and dies later in the day after consuming a case of beer.Or the guy who runs off the rode and has a broken leg or two because he has never ridden a scooter. No need to place the blame else where and leave the idiot tourist blameless. Put the blame where it belongs nine out of ten times on the fella laying in the hospital bed for bad decisions.

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I was visiting a patient in my local government hospital last evening. She had paid 800bt/day for a private room. Quite nice with  aircon, fan, TV, microwave, wifi etc.

 

However she said the 800bt rate was for people (presumably Thais) paying themselves. If insurance was involved, the price was 1,200bt/day.  Dont know the rate for farangs!

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Farangs Death Project

 

Sounds like an ominous goal to kill us all.

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For sure I am going to cry for any hospital in this country !!!

 

 

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18 hours ago, smedly said:

This country makes a huge amount of money from tourists, it is a vital part of GDP and has been the case for decades, the problem is that there are no safety standards or at least they are not enforced making Thailand (no matter how much they claim otherwise) and extremely dangerous place to holiday.

 

The costs quoted in the OP are not only tiny but are very likely exaggerated, when you consider the actual cost in terms of labour and materials without profit it is no where near what they are quoting.

 

Yes people should have insurance when they go on holiday but equally there is a duty of care to keep visitors safe when they visit Thailand, when they are injured through no fault of their own then Thailand should be willing to step up and compensate. 

 

They have gotten away with this for far too long, they have had decades to improve things but instead stuffed the money in their greedy pockets showing no consideration to improve their health and safety.........and yes I for once agree in this instance of that commonly used Thai phrase - well if they hadn't come to Thailand it wouldn't have happened so it must be their fault, might be time for people to rethink their holiday destinations.

 

If a Thai goes to the UK on holiday they will be treated in hospital like everyone else, the difference being that the likelihood of something happening to them is vastly different.

 

 

So a few million here and there .................so what, you are making trillions in tourism.

You forget that people come here because its not a nanny state with 'health and safety' etc etc. Get insured or pay up if you travel here. Its daft to say that the govt should step up and pay. 

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15 hours ago, simoh1490 said:

Sensible for tourists of course - but what would you suggest for the nearly 3 million resident expats who already live here, many of whom have lived here for ten years or more, are over the 70, have pre-existing conditions and are unable to buy health insurance in Thailand.

quite so, and a fact that every body seems to be missing, if the driver of offending machine is drunk, has no licence, or was speeding, weather or not you have insurance, your not covered. by most.

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Special report???

 

It seems to me I've read pretty much this exact same story in past years here, coming out of Phuket.  Perhaps it's an annual exercise for the PR/marketing staff there as their way to claim that they need more money.

 

That said, there does need to be a better solution for foolish farangs who come to Thailand on vacation with no or inadequate medical insurance, especially for accident coverage.

 

But if anyone's waiting for the Thai government to come up with a good solution to this one, good luck and keep waiting.

 

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18 hours ago, smedly said:

This country makes a huge amount of money from tourists, it is a vital part of GDP and has been the case for decades, the problem is that there are no safety standards or at least they are not enforced making Thailand (no matter how much they claim otherwise) and extremely dangerous place to holiday.

 

The costs quoted in the OP are not only tiny but are very likely exaggerated, when you consider the actual cost in terms of labour and materials without profit it is no where near what they are quoting.

 

Yes people should have insurance when they go on holiday but equally there is a duty of care to keep visitors safe when they visit Thailand, when they are injured through no fault of their own then Thailand should be willing to step up and compensate. 

 

They have gotten away with this for far too long, they have had decades to improve things but instead stuffed the money in their greedy pockets showing no consideration to improve their health and safety.........and yes I for once agree in this instance of that commonly used Thai phrase - well if they hadn't come to Thailand it wouldn't have happened so it must be their fault, might be time for people to rethink their holiday destinations.

 

If a Thai goes to the UK on holiday they will be treated in hospital like everyone else, the difference being that the likelihood of something happening to them is vastly different.

 

 

So a few million here and there .................so what, you are making trillions in tourism.

 

Best post I have read in a long while.... maybe this year. Cheers.

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2 hours ago, trawler said:

In order to get a Schengen visa for my Thai wife I had to prove that we had a minimum of Euro 30000 health insurance coverage.This applies to all Thais applying for visa's to Europe.So whats wrong with requiring that tourists to Thailand have similar coverage??????

If you wish to live in a foreign country where you are ineligible for local health care then surely you have either health insurance or self cover.

This is common sense and stating that lots of expats here cannot get coverage is not a excuse for becoming a burden on a foreign country.

This nanny state mentality is becoming so pervasive that people are not thinking anything through for themselves.

You would be surprised (or not) at how many long term expats have no / inadequate insurance - especially for cases where their employer does not provide it. Fortunately my wife is a civil servant so I am covered along with my son. Others are not so fortunate. It just makes no sense to not have insurance. 

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Dear Thailand: It is the price you pay when you move from a third world country to a second or first. Delusions of grandeur

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Can't be bothered reading through maybe said already if it's that bigger problem it would make sense not to let tourists in Thailand unless they show travel insurance at check out or make them have to buy insurance at the airport.

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A simple Fix Require all tourists to have travel health insurance To obtain a Schengen visa Thais are required to have Health insurance when traveling to Europe

So its is no big deal regardless if a visa is or is not required 

 

Have Immigration requests health insurance certificates upon entering the country and if someone does not have a booth that sells it at the airport and direct them there

and report back to Immigration after they get it 

 

Its really that simple 

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Its a Fact: Many Westerner Expats and Tourists are that naiv to think, it is not necessary to have a Insurance. Think: Whats about your Homecountry; is this common? It is an insolence to demand that thailand pay for uninsured foreign patients, because the insurance costs are too high for some of those. what a silly argument.

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BANGKOK 27 April 2017 02:34
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