Readers' Submissions

Hospital Experience

  • Written by Ferdinand
  • April 7th, 2006
  • 5 min read


The reason for the treatment in a hospital was my unreasonable behavior on a flight and the hours after it, but who is thinking about it if you are in a good mood und heading to Bangkok.

It started on a flight from Doha to Bangkok last year. Beside me sat a man about my age, also from Germany. We did the usual small talk, and soon we found out we had the same background before our retirement. We used to earn our money as travelling service engineers, not the same companies nor the same branch but very often in the eastern, former communist countries. So we had a lot of talking about coming along with the people during working hours and last not least the adventures after the work was done. Sometimes in big cities but also out in the country. We were revelling in memories remembering the nights with Vodka and … in Russia and so on; we had also some drinks, a “little” more than usual.

After six hours feeling like one hour we arrived in BKK. After immigration and customs we parted. I went upstairs to the departure level to get a cab on their way back downtown, it is cheaper and no waiting.

On our way to Chinatown we had a delay due the Saturday evening traffic jam and I was sitting inside like a dog in the dessert looking for a tree. Finally I found a hotel and a restroom.

Horrydoo, first night in Bangkok again, tired but still in the mood for a drink. So I went out strolling thru some narrow allies between Yaworat and Charoenkrung. I past by a place, with no doors in front, it looks like a garage dump but chairs and tables and a big karaoke machine inside, many peoples chatting, singing and drinking some of them beckoning on me so I stepped in, I looked around andsaw all kinds of peoples but only one Farang (me).

The guests where friendly trying to talk with me and cheers in many languages.

A bunch of ladies on a table were celebrating something, drinking and laughing but later on they had some arguing and all of a sudden they were in a fight, rolling on the floor biting, scratching and slapping. The men enjoyed watching the spectacle and kept clear.

The lady (est. 85 kg) in charge of the place appeared and had, with the help of a big bucket of ice water, everything under control in no time, separated and put them on their seats again. They fished the ice cubes out of their clothes and used them to cool down the small injuries.

Later the lady in charge passed by my table, maybe my face was a little anxious, so she made a picture with her handycam and said: Don’t worry you are safe here, we take care for you. After hours back in my hotel I fell a sleep immediately.

Early in the morning I went to the restroom but no success, a few drops only. I have heard about such cases but it never happened to me. What can I do, so I get dressed go down and hoped if I walk a little the cramp will disappear. No way so I caugt a cab and told the driver: To the nearest hospital.

The hospital

It is a Chinese hospital, the name I don’t know, all written in Chinese and Thai but it is located close to Wat Tramit. In the foyer two nurses ask me questions; I showed them my ID card and showed them by gestures about my troubles. First they put all my data also the name of the hotel in the PC, then a blood pressure test, weight and height was taken.

After a short time a nurse lead me to the doctor. He spoke some English and he told me such cases may happen und you will have a relief soon. He called a nurse and gave her some instructions and I was given in her hands. She lead me in a large room, there I met another lady, a nurse or doctor, who knows. They gave me to understand to strip and lay down; the place was separated by curtains. They pushed a wagon full with equipment inside and then they worked on me for about 20 minutes but with success. The only English word she spoke was o.k. she was smiling nodding with her head and I understand it as a question “How are you” so I answered also with a smile and nodding and o.k.

They covered me up und gave me to understand to lie down and stay for a while.

Later on she came and led me to the doctor, he showed me two sheets, and said the results of the blood and urine samples are good, but I have to take some medicine. I went with the nurse to the pharmacy, the lady behind the counter gave me two bags with some pills with my name and the instruction printed on. She handed me also a patient’s card and a detailed bill written in Chinese and Thai. I took my Visa card out of my pocket then I saw the total for the whole treatment, blood and urine samples the medicine and examination. 540 baht only so I paid in cash.

Because I was not sure about the bill, I went once more inside to the doctor, he took a short glance at the bill and the pills, wished me good luck and I was outside.

Back in the hotel I had a late breakfast went to my room for a little more sleep.

About 2 hours later my phone was ringing; a lady from the reception asked me: Are you all right, is anything o.k. with you?

I asked her: Is something wrong, why you ask me. She sad nothing wrong but on the desk was a note with your name and a request to check on you.

It was the first time I had to undergo a medical treatment during travelling, but even I had a disease I had a good feeling because I received help and care.

For a service by high educated and well trained specialists in an institution with costly equipment it was less as a barfine, but such is world.

Question: How is custom in Thailand, do you give any tip to nurses and doctors?

Stickman's thoughts:

Yep, hospitals in Thailand offer treatment at very reasonable prices. And they are one of few places in Thailand where I have yet to be asked for a tip!