Moving to Thailand? Tips for Managing Your Medical Records

July 30, 2015

Amidst the long list of things to take care of before moving to Thailand, medical records should be among the important paperwork you pack. Here is a checklist that will make your international transition smoother and help establish relationships with your new doctors soon after arriving in Thailand.

The medical documents you should bring include items pertaining to your patient history and past treatments; any current and past prescriptions; your doctors’ contact information; and current insurance information. Give yourself enough time to organize these documents and pack them in a separate waterproof envelope to take with you in your carry-on luggage.

Patient history

One to two months before your move, put in a request to your doctors’ offices to provide you with copies of your patient history. This includes files from your general practitioner, any secondary or tertiary care specialists, as well as from your dentist and eye doctor. It is helpful to also document any known allergies and immunization history. You may be offered the option to receive paper or electronic copies, so choose whichever is best for you. Keep in mind that you may not need to make a formal request for your own medical history but you may need to if you are accessing someone else’s records.

Current and past prescriptions

Make sure to request copies of your existing prescriptions including medications and treatments such as eye or dietary prescriptions. Better yet, schedule final check-ups with your current doctors for both you and your family so that all prescriptions are up-to-date. Your existing treatments and medications will be easily transferred into and handled by Thailand’s medical system. You can also continue receiving your annual check-ups from our doctors, many of which have been trained overseas.

Your new doctor will want to know your medical prescription history because it prevents the chances of drug interactions with future prescribed medication, being overprescribed for the same drug, and complications from drug allergies. Your new doctor will also be able to prescribe an appropriate drug or treatment alternative if your current prescription is unavailable in Thailand.

Also, having proof of your prescription with you as you pass through customs is a good idea if you plan tocarry any prescribed medication on your person while traveling internationally.

Current doctors’ contact information

There may come a time that either you or your new doctor will need to get in contact with one of your doctors in your previous country of residence. Organize a contact list of all doctor names, company names, practicing medical fields or specialties, addresses, fax numbers, telephone numbers, and emails. This will make it convenient to reference later on if necessary.

If you know which hospital or clinic you will be joining as a new patient in Thailand, we suggest that you relay their contact information back to the doctors from which you are leaving. This is particularly crucial if you are suffering from a chronic disease. Your doctors in both countries can work together to provide consistent medical care to maintain your health.

Insurance information

Double check your insurance policies and their expiration dates before movingso that you are aware of the length of your coverage. Make sure to have information available on hand such as the policy holder’s name, member number, and group number, as well as the names of any dependents. You can check directly with your provider to determine your insurance plan’s compatibility with your new doctor and confirm direct billing arrangements.

If you become a patient at Bumrungrad International Hospital, our Third Party Payor Department can do this for you. Our department can be reached by phone at +66 (0) 2011 2255 or +66 (0) 2011 2234 or through email at [email protected]. We are located on the second floor of the main Bumrungrad Hospital Building.

Don’t wait until it’s too late to pack up these important documents. A little preparation now may save you a headache down the road.

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