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Hospital FAQs
  • Q1 :

    Are any of these doctors internationally trained?

  • Yes. Over 200 are US-board certified, and many others were trained and certified in Europe, Japan, or Australia.

  • Q2 :

    Does Bumrungrad employ foreign doctors?

  • All of our practicing physicians are Thai. In Thailand doctors must pass an examination in the Thai language to be licensed for clinical practice, so there are few foreigners practicing medicine. However, Bumrungrad does employ some international doctors in administrative and coordination roles, helping us better understand and manage patients from different cultures.

  • Q3 :

    Is Bumrungrad safe? What quality standards do you use?

  • As a hospital team, Bumrungrad works very hard to meet and exceed international quality standards. This is why we were the first hospital in Asia to achieve the JCI Accreditation. 
     
    The JCI survey is very rigorous with over 1,000 safety and quality standards in their international hospital review.  While it is true that part of the survey must be adapted to take into account cultural differences in management, this does not in any way allow for lower safety standards for the international hospitals they accredit.
     
    In order to maintain the JCI Accreditation, the hospital must be reaccredited every 3 years.  Bumrungrad has passed three of these re-accreditation surveys since 2002.  For the re-accreditation process, a team of 3 doctors and 3 nurses spend a week at the hospital.  The team is allowed to look at absolutely anything in the hospital, and question every employee.
     
    On a more frequent basis, we track more than 60 indicators of clinical quality, outcomes, and patient safety.  And we benchmark ourselves against US standards.  As an indication of higher level criteria, below is a chart of some of the more common quality measures for hospitals:

     

    Quality Measure Benchmark Source Benchmark Bumrungrad (2010)
    Inpatient mortality IQIP* 1.06% 0.89%
    Perioperative mortality IQIP 0.19% 0.13%
    Unscheduled readmit within 30 days IQIP 1.94% 0.84%
    Ventilator-associated pneumonia per 1,000 ventilator days NHSN** 1.5 1.12

    *International Quality Indicator Project, US
    **National Healthcare Safety Network, US


  • Q4 :

    Have these organizations ever taken any disciplinary actions against the hospital?

  • No. Neither accrediting organization has ever taken any disciplinary action against Bumrungrad. Both JCI and the Thai Hospital Accreditation Authority have procedures in place to deal with complaints and concerns received from patients concerning their accredited hospitals. When requested, Bumrungrad has always provided all requested information to the independent reviewers in such cases. The hospital has met all requirements and has never been disciplined or had its accreditation withdrawn or restricted in any way by either accrediting organization.

  • Q5 :

    How are a patient's rights to competent medical treatment protected?

  • All patients in Thailand are protected by Thai law, codes of medical conduct, and a Patient Bill of Rights enforced by the Kingdom's Medical Council (you may ask the hospital for a copy). Patients may complain directly to the Thai Medical Council, or the Ministry of Public Health. These organizations have the power to enforce remedies because they grant licenses to hospitals and their doctors. You may also complain to the Thai Consumer Protection Agency or the police, or take legal action in a Thai court.

    When considering any overseas treatment it is important to understand that any legal disputes (either medical care or commercial) concerning your care will be decided in the country of treatment, not your country of origin or citizenship.

  • Q6 :

    How does the hospital prevent potentially-dangerous drug interactions?

  • Bumrungrad uses software currently updated four times a year with an international drug database (First DataBank), to check for potentially harmful drug interactions.

  • Q7 :

    How much experience does Bumrungrad have in treating international patients? What facilities does the hospital have in place specifically for international patients?

  • Bumrungrad treats over 1,000 patients from outside Thailand every day (over 400,000 per year) from 190 different countries. We know of no other hospital in the world that treats more international patients than Bumrungrad currently treats. Facilities we have in place specifically for international patients include:

    • International Medical Coordination Office: 7 doctors and 17 nurses on our administrative staff who coordinate scheduling of procedures, attendant family logistical questions during treatment, and follow-up care planning.
    • International Referral Offices: 24 offices in countries outside Thailand which specialize in arranging appointments and making travel arrangements for Bumrungrad patients.
    • International Referral Center: 16 specially trained staff who respond to between 500 and 1,000 medical inquiry e-mails every day.
    • International Interpreter Services: 109 interpreters covering virtually all languages spoken by our patients. For those few patients whose languages are not covered we make special communication arrangements.
    • International Travel and Visa Services: A unique relationship with Thailand's largest ground services travel company to arrange any travel needs for patients and families while in Thailand. The Thai Home Ministry operates a visa extension service at Bumrungrad once a week to process any needed visa extensions for patients and their families.
    • International Hotels on Campus: Two hotels (one connected to the hospital by a link bridge) are operated by Bumrungrad specifically for international patients. These hotels are offered to Bumrungrad's international patients at favorably competitive rates to comparable hotels in the area.
  • Q8 :

    Is the hospital accredited by a reputable third-party organization?

  • Yes. Bumrungrad was the first Asian hospital accredited by the Joint Commission International (JCI), the international arm of the organization that reviews and accredits American hospitals. Their checklist includes over 350 standards, for everything from surgical hygiene and anesthesia procedures to the systems in place to credential medical staff and nurses. JCI sends a team to re-review accredited hospitals at 3-year intervals. Bumrungrad was first accredited in 2002 and re-accredited in 2005 and 2008.

    Thailand also has its own Hospital Accreditation (HA) program conducted by the Institute of Hospital Quality Improvement & Accreditation. Bumrungrad was the first hospital in the country to be accredited by this program in 1999 and was re-accredited in triennial reviews in 2002, 2005 and 2008. The Thai accreditation process is demanding: Bumrungrad is one of only 22 private hospitals in Bangkok (out of over 100) to earn it.

  • Q9 :

    Are the hospital's doctors licensed and credentialed?

  • Yes. All Bumrungrad physicians are fully licensed by the Thai Medical Council to practice their specialty in Thailand. In addition, many are Board Certified in their specialty in the US, Australia, or Europe. Bumrungrad's credentialing process requires a formal review of each doctor's qualifications and track record by the Credentials and Bylaws Committee and the Hospital's Medical Executive Committee. These reviews take place before a doctor is appointed to the medical staff by the Hospital's Board of Governors and then again every three years thereafter.

    A summary of each physician's qualifications is available when you search for a doctor on this website. If you would like to review the qualifications or specific experience of your physician in more detail when you arrive we can arrange for you to do so. Also, our International Medical Coordination Office (7 doctors and 17 nurses on our administrative staff) can address questions or concerns you may have regarding your procedure before you make the decision to schedule your visit.

  • Q11 :

    What measures does the hospital take to ensure patient safety?

  • Bumrungrad considers the quality of patient care, patient safety, and continuous improvement to be at the core of our mission. We follow patient safety practices outlined by the standards of our accrediting organizations (JCI and Thai HA). Our facility was built to comply with US hospital (NFPA) building and fire safety standards. Medical care is continuously monitored by both hospital and medical staff committees and the hospital continuously tracks over 500 patient safety and clinical quality measures. Our dedicated team vigorously reviews every concern raised by patients, doctors, administrators, and hospital quality organizations with regular reports of their findings to the hospital's management team, medical staff, and Board of Governors.

  • Q12 :

    What should I prepare for my appointment at Bumrungrad International?

  • If you are a new patient, please come 30 minutes before your appointment time with your doctor to allow for registration and vital sign screening. Please bring a list of any medications or herbal remedies you are currently taking. If you are insured, please also bring your insurance card or policy documents with you. All patients under 20 must also be accompanied by a parent or official guardian in case permission is required for a procedure.

  • Q13 :

    What training and licensing do hospital nurses, pharmacists, imaging and lab technicians receive?

  • Nurses, pharmacists, imaging and lab technicians must undergo schooling and pass certification exams to obtain licenses to practice in Thailand. Nurses are re-certified at 5-year intervals. Those with special responsibilities (such as ICU nurses) must receive special training and be certified as competent in those areas. Bumrungrad nurses also receive special English language training and ongoing continuing education covering a wide range of patient safety issues.

  • Q14 :

    Does Bumrungrad use counterfeit or old pharmaceutical products to cut costs?

  • Bumrungrad absolutely does not sell counterfeit or expired pharmaceutical products.  It is true that pharmaceuticals bought in some local street side pharmacies may indeed be counterfeit, or as is much more common, stored improperly or be in stock for long periods of time.  At the hospital we have close ties with international pharmaceutical companies to ensure the quality of the medicine, and to ensure the transportation and storage of the pharmaceuticals in appropriate dry, air conditioned  and sanitary environments.  On a country level, in Thailand there are many reliable outside pharmacies, such as Boots or Watsons, where pharmaceuticals can be safely purchased.
  • Q15 :

    What about the blood supplied at the hospital? How can I be sure the blood is clean?

  • At Bumrungrad, we only use blood supplied by the International  Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (more commonly known as the Red Cross).   The blood we use is supplied with the same testing and quality measures used in other developed countries.  You can see more about the Red Cross’s blood work at:
    http://www.ifrc.org/en/what-we-do/health/blood-services/

  • Q16 :

    Will I have trouble communicating?

  • English is widely spoken around the hospital. You will be able to communicate in English with Bumrungrad doctors, medical and customer service staff. We also employ 109 interpreters to help patients who speak other languages.