Thailand’s Government Considers Emergency Health Insurance For Tourists

Thailand’s Government Considers Emergency Health Insurance For Tourists

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Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Ministry and the National Institute for Emergency Medicine intend to discuss the potential of expanding the Universal Health Insurance Coverage for Emergency Patients (UCEP) initiative to include foreign tourists.

Tourism and Sports Minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol stated that the ministry has already highlighted this matter with the Public Health Ministry and is awaiting a blueprint as the government develops a safety plan as part of its aim to elevate Thailand to become a tourism center next year.

She stated that all hospitals in Thailand should provide emergency medical treatment to international tourists.

A Taiwanese tourist was critically injured in a car accident in December and was denied admission to a private hospital, causing a media commotion. As of March 31, 128 foreigners had been hurt while traveling in Thailand this year, including 64 fatalities.

According to the tourism permanent secretary’s office, road accidents injured 82 people.

Water accidents, primarily recreational, were responsible for the most deaths (18), followed by 15 fatalities from vehicle accidents, 12 deaths from personal health difficulties, and two suicides. In 2023, there were 400 injured tourists and 185 fatalities.

Compensation for Tourists

Ms Sudawan stated that adding foreign visitors to the UCEP scheme would help assure their safety by supplementing the current assistance program for foreign tourists’ injuries or deaths.

The current plan, which runs from January 1 to August 31, provides compensation of up to 1 million baht for death and 500,000 baht for injuries. The government has allotted 50 million baht for the assistance initiative to last eight months during the current fiscal year.

She stated that the ministry needs to assess the real amount of compensation during the trial period before deciding how much to propose to extend this scheme beyond September.

As of March, the initiative had given out approximately 2 million baht to travelers entitled to compensation. According to an executive from the Tourism and Sports Ministry who requested anonymity, some of these injury situations involve other ministries.

The Commerce Ministry, for example, should regulate registered automobile and motorcycle rental shops, according to the executive.

According to the executive, some operators do not follow the rules, such as not requiring a driver’s license before renting a vehicle or failing to provide insurance to tourists. Some tourists violate safety regulations, particularly while riding motorcycles without helmets, according to the CEO.

Some governments, particularly Saudi Arabia, have expressed concerns to the ministry about visitor safety, citing a high number of motorcycle accidents among Saudi tourists in Phuket and Pattaya, primarily among persons aged 20 to 35.

Gareth Wilson pattaya

Briton Bleeds to Death After Falling Through Glass Shower

Meanwhile, A 54 year-old British man has died from heavy bleeding after slipping and falling into a glass shower screen at his home on Wednesday morning, Pattaya police reported.

The tragedy occurred in a one-story house in Tambon Huai Yai, Bang Lamung district, in Pattaya, Chon Buri. Police discovered Gareth Wilson, 54, laying face up on his bed. He was wearing only underpants and had a large slash in his chest.

A broken part of a glass shower door and a pool of blood on the floor sat beside the bed. Pattaya News reports the police found no signs of a struggle.

His Thai wife told police that the man had partied with pals on Tuesday night and passed out while walking to the shower room on Wednesday morning. His head hit the sliding glass door, which broke and cut open his chest.

The bleeding man struggled back to his bed and lay down. A medical team was brought to the scene, but he died from massive blood loss.

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