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Blood, a gift that goes on giving at Phuket's Vachira Hospital

Expat Blood Donors Can Gain Free Treatment

Wednesday, October 2, 2013
PHUKET: Vachira Phuket Hospital has devised a deal that will help expat residents to cope with their medical care needs - and be really useful if by chance they don't have insurance.

The Phuket City facility, one of three public hospital on the island, is now offering a ''special'' for those who wish to become a blood donor.

Give blood 18 times, the hospital has now declared, and you will get your inpatient care at the hospital at a 50 percent reduction in cost.

Give blood 24 times, and your inpatient care will cost you nothing.

The deal should help to ease the blood shortage in types that are found more often in Caucasians than in Thais.

It should also ease the problem of expats who don't have insurance, and who are still treated regardless by doctors and nurses at the hospital.

The deal was highlighted in a sad way recently when a 53-year-old German expat died of cancer there last month.

He left a Thai wife and children aged 19 and 15. The bill for the final care of the man was 80,000 baht, and the family would have had great difficulty paying it.

Then the wife produced his record of blood donations over the years . . . and the 80,000 bill miraculously disappeared.

Generally speaking, blood donations can be made up to four times a year, so the target of a 50 percent cut in inpatient costs can be reached in as little as six years, while free care can be achieved in just two more years.

Vachira wants to grow its list of donors in any case, because there's always a need for plasma. Donors get the VIP treatment and it's as regular outing that gives plenty in return.

For those who have plenty to spare, the hospital is also offering a different kind of deal: give two million baht to the building program and treatment in the VIP suites at the hospital is free for you and your immediate family for the rest of your lives.

Deals lke these should at least put a smile on the face of a few sick people. Get in touch with Vachira on 076 76 237 237 to find out more.

The Phuket Vegetarian Festival also brings an increased demand for blood and it starts on October 5.

The Phuket Regional Blood Centre is offering an approrpiate white t-shirt as a gift to all those who donate between now and October 13.

The centre at Rattanakosin 200 Pi Road in Phuket City is open every day. Telephone 076251178-2 or 0819588854 for details.

Comments

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Initial reading this seems a good idea, but if giving full blood, the recommended waiting time between donations is 56 days, approx. 6.5 times a year, it would take close to 3 years to get to 18 donations, on blood you have given free and the hospital has charged a patient for and to recoup your "discount" you need to be sick enough to be an inpatient.

Posted by DSI Watcher on October 2, 2013 11:06

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Genius

Posted by gee on October 2, 2013 11:11

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Does anybody know how much Vachira charges a foreigner for receiving a blood transfusion per unit ?

Posted by ThaiMike on October 2, 2013 11:26

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You should only give blood 4 times a year, so 18 pints is 4 1/2 years of donations.

Posted by GiantFan on October 2, 2013 12:49

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Some nice carrots on offer there. Donor criteria differ between ASEAN countries, for instance Singapore, Malaysia and, I think, Brunei and Philippines state:
"Travel to Europe
With effect from 1 July 2002, you will be ineligible to donate blood indefinitely if you fall into EITHER one of the following 2 groups:
1. You have visited or lived in the United Kingdom (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, or the Channel Islands) from 1980 through 1996 for a cumulative period of 3 months or more, or you have received a transfusion of blood or blood components in the United Kingdom (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, the Isle of Man, or the Channel Islands) between 1980 till now.
2. You have visited or lived in France from 1980 till now for a cumulative period of 5 years or more. However, if you have stayed in Europe (besides United Kingdom and France) for a cumulative period of more than 5 years, you can donate plasma only through apheresis method".
Thailand doesn't ask for this. (They've probably got their share of mad cows already). Also the period a person with tattoos or body piercings cannot donate blood can vary between countries from one to three years.
Maybe after 2015 it will all be regulated.

Posted by Pete on October 2, 2013 13:54

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I just gave blood there for the first time. It was a good experience with caring and professional staff and cookies and drinks after including vitamins to be taken to help replenish the blood. Now only 17 more visits to go until I can get that toupee with some brains in it.

Posted by Jon on October 2, 2013 15:14

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I wonder if the 12 donations I have given already count ?

They had a similar scheme whereas if you made 10 donations you got a free liver and kidney function check. By the time I reached 10 they had stopped it.

Posted by soupdragon on October 2, 2013 17:51


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