Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Medical issues, doctors, dentists, opticians and hospitals in Hua Hin and Thailand.
RCer
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Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by RCer » Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:55 pm

I just spent 3 days in BKK hospital in BKK for an urgent operation to remove my Thyroid. Bill came to over 313,000 baht. Fortunately it is something the US Department of Veterans Affairs is responsible to pay for as its a repeat of a medical problem I had while in the military.

If it had been almost anything else, I would have had to have the cash.

As for the hospital, amazing treatment and professionalism. I couldn't be happier.

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404cameljockey
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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by 404cameljockey » Sat Jan 27, 2018 4:06 pm

Anyone who lives in a country which has no free healthcare and takes out no insurance is either unlucky to be too old to start fresh cover, desperate for cash or an idiot. The first two are the only excusable reasons. I know we had this discussion a few times before so I won't go on, but that's how it is as far as I'm concerned.

Please please, all get insured, at least for inpatient matters and all cancer care if you are able.

Good to hear BKK Hospital made you happy, it's good to get wide reports on all the hospital options in HH and environs (including BKK itself).

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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by hhfarang » Sun Jan 28, 2018 1:00 am

RCer wrote:
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:55 pm
I just spent 3 days in BKK hospital in BKK for an urgent operation to remove my Thyroid. Bill came to over 313,000 baht. Fortunately it is something the US Department of Veterans Affairs is responsible to pay for as its a repeat of a medical problem I had while in the military.

If it had been almost anything else, I would have had to have the cash.

As for the hospital, amazing treatment and professionalism. I couldn't be happier.
I realize you wrote that your surgery was urgent so maybe Bangkok hospital in Hua Hin was a must, but if you/anyone has to have less urgent surgery I recommend St. Louis Hospital in Bangkok. My wife had exactly that same surgery there and we paid 1/5th of what Bkk Hsp charged you (60+k baht).
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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by PET » Sun Jan 28, 2018 6:59 am

Good to hear from you again HHF and hope you are all well back in in USA. Your advice is very good of course and Phetcharat Hospital is a second alternative where you do not pay so much.
VERAX - What matters in life is not where you are from but where you are going.

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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by 404cameljockey » Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:01 am

hhfarang wrote:
Sun Jan 28, 2018 1:00 am
RCer wrote:
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:55 pm
I just spent 3 days in BKK hospital in BKK for an urgent operation to remove my Thyroid. Bill came to over 313,000 baht. Fortunately it is something the US Department of Veterans Affairs is responsible to pay for as its a repeat of a medical problem I had while in the military.

If it had been almost anything else, I would have had to have the cash.

As for the hospital, amazing treatment and professionalism. I couldn't be happier.
I realize you wrote that your surgery was urgent so maybe Bangkok hospital in Hua Hin was a must, but if you/anyone has to have less urgent surgery I recommend St. Louis Hospital in Bangkok. My wife had exactly that same surgery there and we paid 1/5th of what Bkk Hsp charged you (60+k baht).
Useful info!

He did go to BKK Hospital in BKK, not HH. So yes, definitely worth checking before you book, although it's not easy to weight cost against quality when it comes to lesser know hospitals. :)

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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by oakdale160 » Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:22 am

The are two problems with the cost of care at BKK hospital 1 THe prices are scandalously high. 2 The estimates of probable cost given before admission have no relevance to the final bill. the final bill is always higher sometimes as much as double.

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404cameljockey
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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by 404cameljockey » Sun Jan 28, 2018 10:56 am

oakdale160 wrote:
Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:22 am
The are two problems with the cost of care at BKK hospital 1 THe prices are scandalously high. 2 The estimates of probable cost given before admission have no relevance to the final bill. the final bill is always higher sometimes as much as double.
Surprising that insurance companies don't delist them then.

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Re: Hope You Have Insurance or Plenty of Cash

Post by RCer » Sun Jan 28, 2018 11:14 am

oakdale160 wrote:
Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:22 am
The are two problems with the cost of care at BKK hospital 1 THe prices are scandalously high. 2 The estimates of probable cost given before admission have no relevance to the final bill. the final bill is always higher sometimes as much as double.
Cost of my care in the US would have easily exceeded $50,000 USD. In fact, probably more because we went from sitting in Dr's office and discussing options to Thyroid completely removed in about 8 hours.

This included a cardio exam, pulmonary exam, blood test, second ultrasound, and surgery.

In the US, it would have meant a trip through the emergency room.

The thyroid was literally choking me.

The estimated cost was 281,000 - 340,000 baht. Final bill was well below it.

BKK hospital in Hua Hin is my normal care facility because the will direct bill the US VA for certain things when I am in-patient.

But, the don't have the skills needed for my case and was sent to BKK hosp in BKK.

Quality of care from everyone involved, beginning to end far exceeded what the Veterans hospital gives and most regular hospitals in the US for that matter.

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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by Henry 14th » Sun Jan 28, 2018 1:43 pm

Of the 2 surgeries we have had at BKK hospital in Hua Hin, both have cost much less than the estimated quote.

Both times we have been highly satisfied with the service - from surgery to post op care.


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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by jimk » Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:23 pm

I've had two operations in Thailand -- the first one a prostatectomy 12 years ago in a private hospital in Petchaburi, which cost me around 60,000 baht, and the second two years ago in the Hua Hin Hospital, where my bill came to 25,000 baht, most of which was the cost of a private room for a week. At these prices, I'm happy to forgo health insurance, which would have cost me much, much more in premiums. They probably wouldn't want my business anyway, since I'm 78.

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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by Vital Spark » Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:16 pm

Health care in Thailand is one of the many reasons why Mr.VS and I are moving back to the UK.

A few months ago Mr.VS wasn't feeling too good. He thought he may have dengue fever (although he wasn't sweating), so we went along to the local Bangkok Hospital here in Nakhon Pathom. They tested his blood and took a saliva swab, and said he didn't have dengue, but he'd have to stay for three days. :? We finally agreed on a one-night stay as the room cost 2,500 baht and they could keep an eye on him. He was rigged up to saline (isn't everyone...) and then they pumped some antibiotics into him (for what??). He was given copious amounts of rehydration sachets, and at one point in the night they decided to give him oxygen - he didn't need it. I returned the following morning and rescued him. We thought that the bill might nudge 10,000 baht. The total bill for bad treatment and non-essential stuff was nearly 18,000 baht. That's over half a month's salary for us. The extras added onto the bill were ridiculous (and non-negotiable). :cuss:

The following day his left leg was severely swollen - too many salts?? It calmed down after a few days after elevating the leg and a bit of massage (done at home).

A friend went to the same hospital with a worrying skin blemish on his temple. His pharmacy friends in the UK insisted that he got it checked out. He went to the same Bangkok Hospital and they gave him some cream to put on it and told him not to worry. He got it checked out by a dermatologist at a clinic and was referred to the local hospital. It was cancer. They then referred him to Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok and he had the 'nasty' removed successfully.

OK, compared to hospital care in the US, Thailand is much cheaper. However, the National Health Service in the UK (however bad the press wants to paint it) is infinitely better and free.

VS
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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by HHTel » Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:32 pm

I have always used HH hospital and they have been good to me and my family over the years. However, in the last week I've found a flaw in their expertise.
I went there with concern of a 'mole' that had developed on my stomach and wouldn't stop growing. I was referred to the plastic surgeon for removal and biopsy. I assumed he would remove the 'mole', submit it for a biopsy and if proven to be cancer then further surgery to be carried out.
I attended an appointment with the plastic surgeon who said he would operate on the coming Friday.
When I turned up, I was instructed to remove my clothes and don an operations gown. "I need to speak with the surgeon first" I said. When I got to speak with him I asked him what he was intending to do that day. He was going to make a 4 inch eliptical incision. Remove the 'mole' and all layers of the skin then send it off for a biopsy.
"You will not" I said and walked out.
I went to the 'Sirinthip Clinic' (opposite Pae Waan) in the afternoon and asked the dermatologist what her opinion was. She looked at it and said immediately "You don't need a biopsy as it's not cancerous. It's not even a mole. It's a wart which is caused by a viral infection and never is cancerous". She sent me to her surgeon who cut it off within ten minutes. The scar will be no bigger than my little finger nail. I've asked for a biopsy anyway just to set my mind at rest.
To conclude, I've always recommended HH hospital but I'll modify that in that "Don't go there with a skin problem!"

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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by centermid7 » Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:15 am

I've read all of these stories - on this forum and others - for many years and I'm pretty much of the opinion that for the most part the treatment, professionalism, and results that anyone gets is often just random chance.

I've never thought much of the medical field here in Thailand I don't believe that it is really all that good. We of the West often (and correctly IMO) bemoan the state of the Thai education system yet somehow their medical training universities are top shelf? I think not. True, some doctors do travel and probably get a higher level of education but when they return and still have only a bare grasp of the English language it gives me pause as to how much better education that there really did receive.

All generalities I know . . . . .

Cheers!

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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by thebears » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:01 pm

Although it might sound unfair to be critical, given the many Thai doctors who are excellent, I nevertheless have experienced a lack of good standards and procedures under Thai medical care, all of which have been in the expensive internationally accredited hospitals.

At Bumrungrad hospital Sukhumvit, a so-called experienced doctor made a dreadful mistake with an invasive exploratory procedure that caused me substantial amount of pain and to some extent a permanent loss of function following what happened. I took up the matter afterwards formally with the hospital's complaints process and the doctor, in his report which followed, lied about the events that took place to save himself, claiming wrongly that I had suddenly moved at the moment when he carried out the procedure, causing him to slip, whereas he in fact carried out the procedure in the wrong place at the outset.

Bumrungrad had previously asked me, before the procedure took place, to sign a revised patients' agreement to waive any claim to international legal representation against the hospital, limiting any claims for medical negligence to the Thai legal system or the consumer protection board (the two main options for recourse). Notably many of the international hospitals are accredited with overseas regulatory bodies, such as JCI, but in the case of Bumrungrad, it attempts to coerce patients to waive their rights to international recourse. We know of course that Thailand's legal system is far from effective and impartial and of course businesses and individuals are fully aware of this. The hospitals in Thailand might be cheaper than in USA, as posters have indicated, but it doesn't necessarily make them value for money. In my view, they clearly are not, standards cannot be relied upon and ultimately one's health is priceless. In addition, it seems that once patients are undergoing treatment for unforeseen illnesses, hospitals take advantage to the maximum extent that they can.

My view from many years of treatment experience and even studying medical care myself, is that effective and top-quality medical care anywhere is a very difficult thing to provide and to provide consistently well, with all the many standards and professional knowledge required to carry it out and provide patients with the very best. In addition, nurses and other hospital staff frequently make mistakes and therefore providing the very best quality care that never falls short of patients' needs must indeed be a very challenging role.

I do not believe in broad terms that the Thais and what consistutes their attention to detail, and their difficulties following professional standards and practices, or why they need to, have what it takes to provide the very best and consistent medical care, irrespective of their education. As a consequence for me, my intention is only to remain here until such time as I anticipate requiring frequent medical care. The thought of being at their mercy in a hospital bed, with one of their accounting department staff constantly coming into my room to take further deposits from my credit card, fills me with utter dread.

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Re: Bangkok Hospital: hope you have health insurance or plenty of cash

Post by Norseman » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:27 pm

Sorry to hear about your rather bad experiences and I can only say that I have a totally different view on their hospitals.
In December last year I had an eye-operation at St. Mary's Hospital in Korat.
I can not complain about their service because it was excellent, just as eye doctor Dr. Pairat in Hua Hin had told me a few years earlier, but to halv the price in Korat.
50.000 THB in Hua Hin, 25.000 Baht in Korat.
You have to choose the right hospital and that is really the end of the story.
If any of you are in need or planning some surgical engagement I will strongly suggest that you do your homework and ask around.
Away from tourist places like Hua Hin, Pattaya, Bangkok and Phuket you will find out that the hospital prices are way more 'eatable'.

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