A Health Guide to Pattaya City…
Before moving into Thailand we try to think about the most important issues that will make our lives safer and more comfortable in our adopted country. Beyond any doubt, we can’t leave Home and arrive in Thailand without knowing whether we should have any specific vaccine, where is the closest or the more trustworthy medical center, whether…the list go on and on.
So, based on our own experience of years living in Pattaya, we have researched so that we will save you time and effort finding links with reliable information in each activity, trying to make a list of choices as broad as possible.
In this simple, humble way , it is how we are Linking Pattaya Together…
There is an excellent standard of healthcare services and facilities available which are very much affordable and cheaper in comparison to the West. English-speaking general practitioners, dentists and opticians are readily available.
The major hospitals have the latest equipment and technology for diagnosis and treatment. It is highly advisable that if you are feeling unwell do not hesitate to visit one of the local hospitals or clinics.
Hospitals in the Pattaya area include:
Bangkok Pattaya Hospital
Sukhumvit Road Website: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sawang Fah Road, Naklua
+66 3842 9244/5
Pattaya International Hospital
Soi 4 (runs between Beach Rd & Second Rd, North Pattaya) Website: email@example.com
Pattaya Memorial Hospital
Central Pattaya Rd +66 3842 9422/4
Pattaya City Hospital
Soi Buakhao, South Pattaya. Tel. 038-420 823, 038-420 562
Surecell Clinic pattaya
Specialized in Platelet Plasma Therapy (PRP) Website: www.surecell.co.th
Hospitals in Si Racha:
Pyathai Siracha Hospital
Samitivej Hospital Siracha
If only I’d known…
- If you prefer not to be carrying your passport at all time, as a precaution, you should have a copy of your passport (get a credit card sized laminated copy made at any of the copy/printing stores to carry in your purse) and details of any health insurance that you hold.
- Another good idea is to register with one of the local hospitals, this enables a speedy check-in should you have to go (touch-wood you won’t but more than likely you will at some point, …we’ve all been there).
- Also, don’t forget to register you and your family with your country of origin embassy in Thailand. You can do this via their websites.
- There is an important fact which we, being an ex-pat, need to understand and act in consequence: we are living in a country where its language not only is not English, but also it has a different alphabet. So, Thai people are making a great effort to be able to communicate with us; and we should make a great effort to try to understand the situation and be tolerant. Going to a medical centre is one of those situations.
- Pattaya’s medical centers have, although in different degrees, nurse and medical staff who are fluent in English. But patiently understand that in several cases, their vocabulary is limited to medical terms, so they tend to give short explanations which might be interpreted as a lack of knowledge. So, it is highly advisable to keep asking questions until your doubts are cleared, if asked, they will find the way to reply. This is very important because we are talking about our health. We should leave a doctor’s office with any doubt.
- We also have to be aware that, as part of Thai culture, generally, Thai people do not ask many questions to doctors, they accept what they are told and take all medications that are being given, – the more, the better. So, Thai doctors tend to prescribe a number of medications that, by Western standards, is too high. So, it is advisable to ask the doctor what has been prescribed and what they are for, and just say that you have those at home, or to change any of them if you know that it isn’t necessary or effective in your case. They will listen to you.
- As many Health Insurances do not cover check-ups, an interesting and economically convenient alternative is offered at Bangkok Pattaya Hospital: Healthy Check-ups packages with huge discounts (up to 70 % of the normal price). Generally, these coincide with Summer time, the Queen’s birthday and December, end of the year . You have three to four different packages each time, so you choose the one that suits you better. Normally you have two months for paying , but more for running all the tests.
As we know while living in our home country, a healthy life is achieved not only by having a balanced diet and exercising accordingly, but also being aware of special concerns in relation with the area where you live.
Thailand with its beautiful but contrasting landscapes, its climate-related conditions of temperature-humidity, could be not only challenging for the comfort of expats coming to live or visit, but we might be expose to new diseases and illnesses that are new to us.
To some extent, attitudes to disease and illness are culturally determined. You will very soon realize that in Thailand, the locals view illness under a different light, from another perspective. We might have diseases in our home countries which could be unknown in Thailand, or at least, very unusual, or the opposite might occur: there are illness here unknown to us.
Also, it would be wise to bring our Medical records and details of vaccination done at home (each country has different legal requirements and recommendations) written in English (or translated into English from your mother tongue), especially if traveling with children.
Having this in mind, and because we are convinced that when talking about our health, the best option is just listen to those who know more, we found interesting-reliable and complete information, about required and recommended vaccines when traveling to Thailand, especially with children. For more information, you could visit this website: www.bangkokpattayahospital.com/en/healthcare-services-en/child-health-center-en.html
If only I’d known…
- It is highly recommended to consult at the Thai embassy of your home country, before traveling, the Kingdom’s current Immunization legal requirements. You might get involved in a situation similar to the requirement with the Yellow Fever vaccine : Some countries, like Argentina, even though they are already removed from the World Health Organization’s list of risk countries, people holding an Argentinian passport are still required to have Yellow Fever vaccination before entering Thailand.
- This is an important issue that shouldn’t be overlooked, because it might occur that without the vaccination certificate, one could be denied to check in at the airport of your home country, or if it is so, you must be vaccinated arriving in Thailand, at Health Check Point, which is before Immigration desks, at International Airports.
Regardless of which country we come from, adjusting to Thailand takes time but we need to be aware and alert. Therefore, at any given time if you don’t feel well, do not hesitate to consult an specialist in one of the hospitals. A quick visit to the doctor could save you or family many days of discomfort.
As it is not our intention to write a medical essay, nor to cover every possible illness or danger that we might encounter once living in Pattaya neither, we will just mention some of the more regular ailments and common illness that expats might suffer, such as diarrhoea, cholera, typhoid fever, intestinal parasites, malaria, dengue fever and the less well known in the West – Japanese encephalitis which are spread by well defined and known routes : contaminated food or/ and water, insect bites and stings or animal bites.
If only I’d known…
Adjusting to a new zone and climate, takes time. It might be shorter or longer, but all of us experience that. So, we are giving some recommendations, just to alleviate or make easier this “Landing”..
- It would be advisable, especially if we come with children, to pay a visit to a doctor to have a clear and comprehensive diet , or at least, characteristics of the food and fruits that we can get here and which ones might be the better for us to progressively introduce in our new diet in accordance with Pattaya’s climate and its effect on our bodies.
- Avoid dehydration by increasing fluid intake (water and natural juices are the best). Wherever you go, take a bottle of water with you, or just buy in any of the many shops that you will find, and drink it. It is very easy to get dehydrated here.
- Thai food is delicious but it is highly advisable to introduce your stomach gradually to these new and very spicy flavors, especially if you are not used to them.
- As there are so many places where to have outdoor activities, especially sports , is very easy to get involved and willing to start just from the beginning. But, it would be wise to increase physical activity gradually, giving time for your body to get used to these new conditions of heat and humidity.
- Talking about outdoor activities, and with so many beautiful beaches in the city, it is very easy to be tempted to go and start sunbathing from the first morning after your arrival. But we need to remember that the sun is really strong here, so it is highly recommendable to gradually increase the exposure to it and always use sunscreen. If you ask a skin doctor, she or he will say, without doubt: Do not sunbath between 10 am and 3pm. Without exceptions.
- Be aware that tap water is not drinkable. So for drinking and cooking, drinking or mineral water must be bought. Nowadays, there are different brands of Water Filters that could be installed in your kitchen, so you could use tap water in a safe way. If you don’t have this possibility, buying drinking or mIneral water is a must.
- When making ice cubes at home, use drinking water, do not use tap water. Ice cubes that are served at established restaurants and bars are not a problem as they are usually prepared from boiled water, but be wary of crushed ice, as it may be frozen tap water.
- Wash your hands periodically, and when cooking wash thoroughly fruits and vegetables with drinking water, and be aware that you can find detergents for vegetables at supermarkets.
- When buying fruits on the street, peel them, and when buying food from a stall, buy only cooked food, Do not eat uncooked or partially cooked food, especially seafood.
We could give a larger list of recommendations but as we are convinced that when talking about our health, the best option is listen to those who know more…
We found interesting-reliable and complete information, about health care but especially basic daily care tips and recommendations, in the Bangkok Hospital Pattaya’s website . Please, visit this website: www.bangkokpattayahospital.com/en/patient-services/health-education-material-en.html
Dentists in Pattaya
Thailand has a considerable number of qualified dentists who offer dental services for a very reasonable price. The majority of them will speak English. The major Hospitals have a very well equipped Dental Centres, so it might be more convenient just go to the hospital that you get more used to since your arrival to the city.
Pharmacies in Pattaya
Pharmacists in Thailand can recommend medicines and prescribe treatments. Antibiotics or painkillers may be given by pharmacists without a prescription.
Has 3 locations as follows: North Pattaya Rd, next to Municipality Hall ; Sukhumvit Rd next to Bangkok Hospital Pattaya, Sukhumvit Road, intersection Siam Country Club Rd, inside Shopping area in front of Tesco Lotus express
4 locations: Central Festival, Beach Road and Royal Garden Plaza, Big C Extra (Pattaya Central Road) and Central Centre. Website: www.th.boots.com/en/brand-a-z.html
Central Festival Beach Road , Royal Garden Plaza, Central marina Shopping Mall, Tuk Com
Health Insurance in Pattaya
When thinking of moving to Pattaya, one of the most important issues is, beyond any doubt, Health Insurance, especially if the one we have back at our home countries doesn’t have any coverage in Thailand.
Regardless of being single, married or married with children, or retired, it is an imperative to have Health coverage, or in others words, Health Insurance.
There are several companies with different plans, so we should choose the one that best suits our own situation.
If only I’d known
- Bear in mind that many if not most Thai health insurance companies will exclude or significantly limit coverage for pre-existing conditions. So, it is highly advisable when applying for health insurance to list all known pre-existing conditions and sort out, beforehand, with the insurer what won’t be covered .
- Another issue to have in mind when applying for health Insurance is our own age. Most Thai health Insurance companies have restrictions and limit age for getting coverage.
We found an interesting site about Health Care, especially Health Insurance. For further information, please, visit this website: www.pattayacityexpatsclub.com/expats/docs/HEALTH-%20CARE.pdf
As we said, this is only an introduction, it would be just impossible to try to describe and tell all about this city and what it has to offer for our health care. Pattaya is a city that you must experience yourself. As we do. Every single day is a new experience, a new challenge.
But we really hope that we had been of help with the information collected in this page. Although you might find further information when you were already living here, we tried to help giving you a basic idea of what Pattaya city has to offer in this important matter, our Health. If you have some comments, please, lets know. In the way we will keep linking Pattaya together.