If you are a foreign Thailand resident who doesn’t have health insurance because you are too old, because it does not cover pre-existing conditions or insurance is too expensive, you are not alone. A survey shows that 66% of long-term retirees in Thailand lack health insurance.
It is very expensive to insure when you are over 70, even if you do not have pre-existing medical conditions. The Thai healthcare system is also suffering from increased costs, as many uninsured foreigners do not have the means to pay for hospital care. SAMS; the Thailand Federation of Swedish Associations, has decided to do something about this important issue. Initially SAMS lobbied the Swedish government to express discontent about Swedish national health insurance not covering health services in Thailand. This has now resulted in the prospect of affordable health insurance for ex-pats of all nationalities, regardless of age or pre-existing medical conditions. The Swedish Association of Hua Hin has been at the forefront of this effort with Board Member Lars Olof Fagerström providing information to Hua Hin Today and eager to spread the news. Lars says “Expats or long-stayers are of course the target groups, especially if they are elderly or cannot get insurance in some other way.” Group health insurance is similar to the way in which big companies provide health insurance for their employees by negotiating with health insurance companies. A reputable insurance broker, Bangkok Insurance Brokers Co. Ltd (BIB), has indicated that basic health insurance may be available for as low as 2,000 THB per month to all ex-pats.
The Swedish Association of Hua Hin has health care of ex-pats on the radar with free medical checks being offered at a recent gathering of Members Expressions of interest are now being sought from those considering taking up such an offer. Around 2,000 registrations required to make the proposal a reality and to launch the largest health insurance group for foreigners in Thailand. This health insurance will not have age restrictions, will be a lifetime cover and will accept most pre-existing medical conditions. However as basic cover, only government hospitals will be included. In the future, the plan is to cooperate with the Thai Immigration Bureau to offer this insurance at all immigration offices in Thailand.
The Cha-Am hospital is just one regional government hospital Features of the Group Health Insurance Proposal
- This insurance only covers treatment in Thai Government hospitals for in-patient coverage.
- Foreigners and Thai nationals of all ages will be accepted for membership.
- Two levels of cover will be offered. Basic cover 500,000 THB annual limit and an optional 2nd level of cover (major medical) with an additional 500,000 THB, which covers 80% in excess of the basic cover.
- The premium is estimated to be just over 2,000 THB
per month for the basic level.
- No cut-off age for older members with continued cover for life.
- Full cover for accidents and most sicknesses.
- Few exclusions with cover for most pre-existing medical conditions after standard waiting periods.
- Standard exclusions will include, but not be limited to; accidents involving drugs and alcohol, suicide, drug abuse, cosmetic treatments, sexually transmitted diseases, AIDs/HIV, dangerous sports, congenital abnormalities/Birth defects, mental illness, criminal acts/ illegal activities. If you are interested in health insurance, expressions of interest are being registered without obligations at: www. insurance-in-thailand.com/affordable-health-insurance-foranyone-in-thailand.