The media in New Zealand say that Sean Kenzie is stuck in the hospital on Phuket and so strapped for cash to pay his bills that his brother is now selling tattoo space on his body.
According to older brother Kane Kenzie: ''We are trying everything we can, but we are running out of time. They [the Phuket hospital] won't release him until we have paid the bill. There's a guard on his door.''
The marketing people at Bangkok Hospital Phuket hadn't realised their popular Thai hospital brand was being tarnished online until Phuketwan pointed out the problem today.
Head of the hospital's Marketing Communications Department, Niyompong Torwong, said there was no guard on Mr Kenzies' Phuket ward door - that would only happen if the patient was in danger or the patient could cause harm to others.
But Khun Niyompong did reveal that police were holding Mr Kenzie's passport.
Officers on Phuket are only supposed to hold passports if the people involved have been accused of a serious crime involving drugs or violence. If that is the situation in Mr Kenzie's case, perhaps we need to know more.
As Khun Niyompong could not recall which police station was holding the passport, we were unable to check to find out why it was being held.
The Kenzie family is quoted today as saying that the outstanding hospital bill is $25,000 and he would need $43,000 for a medical evacuation back to New Zealand.
He suffered collapsed lungs, a split liver, neck injuries, and a broken jaw, which still required surgery.
Efforts appear to be made to raise sympathy in the New Zealand media by a process of suggesting extreme solutions and exaggerations about the Phuket hospital and its fees.
The 27-year-old, who had been working as a roofer in Perth, did not realise that his travel insurance did not cover motorcycles and was seriously injured when he crashed with a van soon after his Phuket holiday began last week.
A spokeswoman for the insurance company, Cover-More Travel Insurance Australia, told the hawkesbaytoday site that he did not pay an extra premium for the scooter/moped policy, which cost $20-$30.
That lets the insurance company off the hook, but not the Phuket hospital.
Khun Niyompong rejected claims that the hospital's fees were too expensive, arguing that they were similar to scheduled fees for operations at other Phuket hospitals.
With or without a guard on the door, Mr Kenzie remains inside Bangkok Hospital Phuket and his family is probably planning the next move in their campaign to get him home.
''I know it's crazy,'' brother Kane said of the latest tattoo idea, ''but desperate times call for desperate measures.
''If I'm able to get my brother home then it's worth it.''