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Getting past “general doctors” at hospitals ?


AdamsAnt
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Walking into any hospital here lands you with a general doctor who doesn’t usually specialize in anything.

 

We are trying to have a very specific problem looked at that we can’t get escalated past a general doctor. We’ve been to Ram and Lanna and got stonewalled with general doctors who not only couldn’t give us an answer, but wouldn’t help us figure out who to speak to or explore ways of digging deeper into the issue. 
 

We believe the issue is a chest wall tumor. Neither doctors we saw even knew what that was and flat out ignored the bulge showing in the X-ray. “No problem” they said, while ignoring the symptoms and the obvious area on the X-ray. 

 

We need to see an expert who will dig deeper and actually listen to what we’re saying to them. We’ve lived here a while but thankfully haven’t had to use medical facilities until now, and their lack of care has terrified us more than anything.
 

We’re desperate and frustrated.

 

Thank you. 

Edited by AdamsAnt
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6 minutes ago, phetphet said:

All the hospitals that I have used here in Thailand usually have a website, and a 'Find a Doctor' option.

Here one can usually see the different departments, doctor's education, speciality etc.

 

So it is possible to find several specialists in a chosen field, choose one and make an appointment to see them.

exactly correct--if i do not know of a doctor or specialist, i will search the specialist department i want, and review the various doctors' training and additional educational and work experience, looking, for any overseas experience in the US, UK, Germany, Australia, etc--not that such experience is mandatory, but, if you are searching among a list of unknown doctors, it is a good starting point.

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Don't know about CM, been there once in life for half a day... but in Phyathai 1 hospital in Bangkok, they would ask about what problems you are having, and if you tell them what kind of doctor you wish to talk to, they would send you directly to specialist. They also have a website with all doctors, where you can search for specific person and make appointment.

 

Can't be that no hospital in CM would have at least part of that? If they really don't, take that 1 hour flight, airport link to Ratchaprarop station, and stroll that 200m to Phyathai 1 hospital.

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Many have you left the same comment, so I’ll reply here regarding those comments.

 

We have to first get an X-ray. That’s step one. There’s no specialist to go to yet as they don’t know where to send us.

 

The problem then comes from when the X-rays are returned, we’re sent to a general doctor who simply dismisses the pain, the lump, and the mark on the X-ray.
 

Ram didn’t even want to look at Lanna’s X-rays. They wanted new ones, which started with seeing a doctor who asked what the problem was. We explained. The doctor said “oh I can’t see this” when we gave him Lanna’s X-rays which is marked where the problem is (marked and measured by Lanna who still dismissed it). 

 

We don’t know who to ask for or what specialist here deals with this particular issue, thus the post here. We’ve thankfully not needed the hospitals here and obviously don’t know how to navigate them.
 

It’s not like we know exactly what the issue is to request a specialist, that’s what we were hoping the general doctor would help us with. We only have some evidence of a problem and some ideas of what it may be.

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6 hours ago, OneMoreFarang said:

Sorry to say this, but maybe this is "your attitude" problem.

Doctors, like many other experts, normally don't like when people tell them something like: I have xyz, I researched it on the internet and I found this YouTube video, now listen to me.

Obviously I don't know if that is how you present this, but this might be the reason why they ignore you.

Maybe just try something like: My chest hurt, and I like to see a doctor...

Thanks for your contribution.

 

My wife has a lump protruding from her chest, pain in the area when she’s breathes, and an X-ray from Lanna that has a specific area marked and measured (and they still dismissed it), and neither doctor will even explore it further. Ram’s doctor won’t even look at Lanna’s X-rays that clearly mark an issue (he claimed he couldn’t read them and sent us to make new ones). 


But yea, the problem is our attitude. 

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6 hours ago, Celsius said:

Almost 10 years here I didn't even know that there is a general doctor at the hospital. They always send me to a specialist at the reception

We were sent to a general doctor who then sent us for X-rays. It ended there in both hospitals. 

 

There’s an obvious lump and pain, and Lanna even marked and measured the obvious area of concern on their X-ray, then dismissed it. We are as confused as some of you appear to be as to what’s going on. 
 

 

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33 minutes ago, AdamsAnt said:

Thanks for your contribution.

 

My wife has a lump protruding from her chest, pain in the area when she’s breathes, and an X-ray from Lanna that has a specific area marked and measured (and they still dismissed it), and neither doctor will even explore it further. Ram’s doctor won’t even look at Lanna’s X-rays that clearly mark an issue (he claimed he couldn’t read them and sent us to make new ones). 


But yea, the problem is our attitude. 

I tried to be helpful. I know what I wrote is not what you were hoping to read.

Fact is for whatever reason you seem to be unable to see a specialist while many others in this forum are able to see specialists. And that obviously brings up the question: What is different?

I wrote in my first post your attitude might be a problem.

I don't know you and obviously I don't know what is going on. But something is going on... 

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 Drop the emotions 100% and just focus on getting the problem fixed.  

12 hours ago, AdamsAnt said:

We’re desperate and frustrated.

 

3 hours ago, AdamsAnt said:

But yea, the problem is our attitude. 

Yes.

 

"The problem is not the problem, the problem is your attitude about the problem." Famous guy.

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I was at Bangkok Hospital two days ago. I called first to be sure I could get what I was looking for; an Audiogram (hearing test administered by an Audiologist.)  I was told the test cost 750 Baht and I didn't need an appointment.  I did NOT have any medical complaint. All I needed was the piece of paper with the test results to send to a hearing aid company.

Dispite discussing this with the Reception Desk, I was informed that I needed to see an ENT doctor first. I told them I did NOT have any medical problem I wanted examined, and had no need for a doctor's consult before and after.

But that's what I got.  I got a doctor's consult that I didn't want. I was given a Tympanographic test also, which I did NOT want, did NOT ask for, but still had to pay for!

I also got a bill for 1,338 Baht. Not a lot of money, obviously, but remember, all I wanted was an 750 Baht Audiogram. I was required to see a doctor before the exam, a consult after the exam, a Tympanogram (measure ear drum pressure,) none of which I wanted.

I was required to have tests I didn't want. I was required to pay for a doctor's exam that I didn't want. All I needed was the Audiogram to send to a hearing aid company.

All too common a practice with hospitals these days. (NOTE: I had an audiogram done the day before at another location (not a hospital) for 400 Baht. I was just looking for a second opinion.)

By the way, it WAS an excellent audiological exam by the Audiologist... once I got past the doctor.

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3 minutes ago, FolkGuitar said:

I was at Bangkok Hospital two days ago. I called first to be sure I could get what I was looking for; an Audiogram (hearing test administered by an Audiologist.)  I was told the test cost 750 Baht and I didn't need an appointment.  I did NOT have any medical complaint. All I needed was the piece of paper with the test results to send to a hearing aid company.

Dispite discussing this with the Reception Desk, I was informed that I needed to see an ENT doctor first. I told them I did NOT have any medical problem I wanted examined, and had no need for a doctor's consult before and after.

But that's what I got.  I got a doctor's consult that I didn't want. I was given a Tympanographic test also, which I did NOT want, did NOT ask for, but still had to pay for!

I also got a bill for 1,338 Baht. Not a lot of money, obviously, but remember, all I wanted was an 750 Baht Audiogram. I was required to see a doctor before the exam, a consult after the exam, a Tympanogram (measure ear drum pressure,) none of which I wanted.

I was required to have tests I didn't want. I was required to pay for a doctor's exam that I didn't want. All I needed was the Audiogram to send to a hearing aid company.

All too common a practice with hospitals these days. (NOTE: I had an audiogram done the day before at another location (not a hospital) for 400 Baht. I was just looking for a second opinion.)

By the way, it WAS an excellent audiological exam by the Audiologist... once I got past the doctor.

Just another example of bill padding, like the mandatory blood pressure and temperature checks

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23 hours ago, phetphet said:

All the hospitals that I have used here in Thailand usually have a website, and a 'Find a Doctor' option.

Here one can usually see the different departments, doctor's education, speciality etc.

 

So it is possible to find several specialists in a chosen field, choose one and make an appointment to see them.

Bangkok Hospital in Chiang Mai has truckloads of specialists in a number of fields, and invite potential clients to make an appointment with all of them online.

 

https://www.bangkokhospital-chiangmai.com/en/

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16 hours ago, AdamsAnt said:

Thanks for your contribution.

 

My wife has a lump protruding from her chest, pain in the area when she’s breathes, and an X-ray from Lanna that has a specific area marked and measured (and they still dismissed it), and neither doctor will even explore it further. Ram’s doctor won’t even look at Lanna’s X-rays that clearly mark an issue (he claimed he couldn’t read them and sent us to make new ones). 


But yea, the problem is our attitude. 

A lump causing pain may be a benign cyst, or something more sinister.

The problem with doctors here is they think they are gods, when in reality quite a few are incompetent shills for the pharmaceutical industry.

 

Several times, I have been prescribed medications which I did not want or need, or were actively dangerous for someone of my age. I have only once been asked for my previous medical history by a Thai doctor.

 

Telling them what the problem is, or questioning them, does not sit well with them.

I would suggest sending Sheryl a PM, she may be able to recommend a competent specialist.

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2 hours ago, scubascuba3 said:

Just another example of bill padding, like the mandatory blood pressure and temperature checks

I can understand the mandatory blood pressure and temperature checks. A hospital must show due diligence before treating patients.  There is no extra charge for these. There is, however, a charge for all the other unneeded, unrequested, and time-wasting tests and consultation they insist upon having.

 

Hiding unneeded tests behind the screen of "it's our policy to provide 'packages' to save patients time and money," is disingenuous and a very obvious lie.  In fact, I asked the cashier how paying 1338 Baht was saving me money compared with 750 Baht, but she pretended she didn't hear me.

If they were to simply tell patients that they can't buy individual tests, and only have packages on offer, it would reduce a lot of angst when patients walk up to the cashier, and give patients a chance to choose a different health care provider.

Edited by FolkGuitar
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Which kind of specialist do you want to see?

 

Very often around hospitals you'll see lots little after hours clinics nearby. They are generally doctors from the nearby hospital who have their own out-of-hours clinic/business. 

 

Their speciality will be written on the window or on a sign (in Thai, of course). 

 

If you have a look around you'll be able to find the specialist most likely. If there is anything their clinic can't handle, they will set up an appointment to see them at their day job in the hospital for further tests or whatever.

 

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13 minutes ago, FolkGuitar said:

......In fact, I asked the cashier how paying 1338 Baht was saving me money compared with 750 Baht, but she pretended she didn't hear me.

If they were to simply tell patients that they can't buy individual tests, and only have packages on offer, it would reduce a lot of angst when patients walk up to the cashier, and give patients a chance to choose a different health care provider.

I can understand your angst at the additional tests they required of you but, once you learned that you couldn't only get the one hearing test, why not simply decline at that point in time?   

But I am happy the cashier met your inquiry with silence (totally unfair to think the cashier could have explained or changed hospital policy).

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20 hours ago, AdamsAnt said:

Many have you left the same comment, so I’ll reply here regarding those comments.

 

We have to first get an X-ray. That’s step one. There’s no specialist to go to yet as they don’t know where to send us.

 

The problem then comes from when the X-rays are returned, we’re sent to a general doctor who simply dismisses the pain, the lump, and the mark on the X-ray.
 

Ram didn’t even want to look at Lanna’s X-rays. They wanted new ones, which started with seeing a doctor who asked what the problem was. We explained. The doctor said “oh I can’t see this” when we gave him Lanna’s X-rays which is marked where the problem is (marked and measured by Lanna who still dismissed it). 

 

We don’t know who to ask for or what specialist here deals with this particular issue, thus the post here. We’ve thankfully not needed the hospitals here and obviously don’t know how to navigate them.
 

It’s not like we know exactly what the issue is to request a specialist, that’s what we were hoping the general doctor would help us with. We only have some evidence of a problem and some ideas of what it may be.

Your comments are very confusing--i have never had either Ram or other hospitals send me to x-ray upon entering the hospital--only a dr sends a order for necessary tests--and i have had drs at Ram and Bkk Cm happily review any test results from another reputable hospital--however, it would not be unusual for a dr to want to their own tests--this would be true here or in the US or anywhere, I believe.  Additionally, you say, you don't know "what specialist here deals with this particular issue" sounds foolish--medical specialties are the same here or in any country with accredited hospitals (as here in Thailand), so you can talk about a tumor in the chest wall--the lung??--google and it will tell you what dr to see for that, even if common sense does not tell you.

 

Now with all that said, it makes me think, in reality, you must actually be just trolling, as it does not seem someone could be as foolish as you are making out.

 

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The  way to do things in Thailand, go to the hospitals website, the doctors will have a bio, and they will be grouped by their field, ent etc etc, i only would see a doctor that has trained or spent time in the west, i have doctors like this very open to discuss your concerns and you can actually question their diagnosis, they should explain the tests you need and why also show you the results and again explain.  You will find that it is likely that you will get someone who is not EMPLOYED by the hospital, but a well qualified doctor who might have a number of clinics at different hospitals

 

The 2 times i did not follow my advice, and took the hospitals advice i ended up with doctors who had already made up their mind, on the treatment, would not discuss and show me the results, i put this down to the KPI'S, where the doctors have a review probably monthly, ie prescriptions tests and the like that are good earners for hospitals, out side doctors don have to put up with it.

Also it is not only foreigners that have these issues

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It appears you have mistitled the thread and your problem is not "getting past" a general doctor to see a specialist - -which as many others have explained, is a non-issue in a private hospital, you simply request the specialist you want, no referral is required -- but rather knowing what type of specialist you need.

 

It also appears that you have been simply walking into hospitals and expecting the reception staff to direct you to the best place, this seldom works in Thailand. You need to do some research first and pre-select the doctor you want to see, then make appointment with him or her. Easily done in all private hospitals.

 

Now in terms of what specialist to see, I would need more information, which you can send me by PM is you like:

- is the lump under the skin or on the skin? (If on the skin - what color? Can yo usebnd picture?)

- Is it freely movable?

-What did the XRAY report state? As it is sounding like the Xray was considered normal, which would suggest that perhaps this is just a cyst or lipoma.

 

Another option would be to see Dr. Morgan as other poster suggested and let her advise you of what sort of specialist you need.

 

You could go directly to a surgical onoclogist but I'm concerned that might be a waste of time if the Xray is normal.

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i spent a week in hospital after heart failure and never seen a single doctor, only nurses who would lift me onto a gurney and wheel me to the atm every 2 days, had to sign myself out, gf came and wheeled me out to a taxi, i was in a realy bad condition.

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