Updated: Apr 18, 2020
As a previous employee of the first hospital in Asia to receive JCI accreditation (the international stamp of approval for medical facilities) which is also a pioneer of medical tourism in Thailand, I’ve seen a variety of extremely happy patients and excruciatingly dissatisfied patients from all over the world.
There have been countless times where people have come up to me and said something on the lines of: “[insert hospital name here] is so expensive and it’s really not worth it.” Before defending my workplace of almost 10 years, I always ask them to tell me every detail that made them feel this way. What was the doctor’s name? What was the core problem? Once I have this data I give them my suggestions for a solution.
About half the time it’s an issue of a physician trying to “force” medicine or a surgical procedure on a patient. This is when I tell the patient that didn’t want to pay for medicine at the hospital cashier that they have the absolute right to request for the physician to write the list of recommended medication so it can be taken to an outside pharmacy. Here at Enliven Concierge we work with a wide range of pharmacies with reasonable pricing, so you can bring that list to us and we will be more than happy to fulfill the order! Please note though, that there are certain medications which require a physicians prescription, so keep that in mind if an item on your list falls into that category.
For the second complaint, my response entirely depends on who the physician is. I know a fair number of doctors that push surgery because they have revenue targets to meet or the more surgeries they do in a day the more money they make (ahem, ob/gynos who push for c-section without even considering natural birth), but there are others that will only say a person needs surgery when it is absolutely necessary.
If I hear the doctor’s name and based on my knowledge it is one that would definitely recommend surgery regardless of the circumstance, I would suggest a second opinion with a doctor that may find another solution. If the patient is willing, I request for them to let us share the recommendations/medical labs/reports/X-Ray/MRI with someone on the Enliven Concierge medical team (at no cost whatsoever!) for another opinion. There are medical professionals who are not inclined to go with surgery and genuinely aim to treat with every other possible option before saying it’s time to go into the OR. It is when these doctors say surgery is imperative do we believe it really is.
When surgery is unavoidable comes the decision of which surgeon and medical facility to proceed with. In my opinion, some of the nation’s best doctors practice at Siriraj or Chula (public medical facilities affiliated with universities) for majority of the time and split their time with private hospitals. Now, to have your surgery led by one of these physicians either you opt to wait for what could be a very long period of time at a public facility, or Enliven Concierge can arrange with our partners for the physician to come to one of the private facilities that we work with to get you what you need right away. Sometimes paying for the best does pay off, especially when the patient’s results and happiness from the experience makes it all worth it.
It is the multitude of issues of this type that people came to me with regularly which prompted me to set up Enliven Concierge. Based on our team’s experience, we have created an opportunity to provide solutions and assistance to patients and hospitals (and holistic wellness centers, physiotherapy centers, Ayurvedic centers, and all our other health and wellness partners) alike. Come to us and we guarantee that we will take exceptional care of you.
Written by Devi Bajaj
Executive Director of Enliven Services