On December 12th, 2023, Dr. Cholnan Srikaew, the Thai Minister of Public Health, publicly revealed a case in which a Taiwanese tourist was reportedly refused admission to a private hospital in the Phatthanakan area, Bangkok and as a result, the patient later passed away after being transferred to another public hospital.
According to Thai media, the unidentified Taiwanese tourist fell unconscious after being hit by a car. Rescue teams then performed first aid and transferred the Taiwanese tourist to the closest hospital in the Phatthanakan area. The name of the hospital was withheld by the Thai police pending investigation.
However, the private hospital allegedly refused to administer the Taiwanese tourist medical treatment, allegedly due to concerns of payment, and asked to transfer the patient to another hospital that was 10 kilometers away. As a result, the patient passed away during transportation.
Dr. Cholnan publicly voiced his concern and ordered relevant agencies to investigate the facts urgently. If the private hospital refused the patient, it could be considered a violation of both humanitarian and legal principles, said Cholnan.
Initially, Thai health service support officials would investigate to determine when the patient was transferred to the private hospital, was medically examined, and was given emergency aid. It was necessary to treat patients in critical condition according to medical professional standards, remarked Dr. Cholnan.
However, it would be determined further whether the patient was in need to be transferred properly to another hospital or not, said Dr. Cholnan.
Furthermore, Dr. Cholnan asserted that the Thai government prioritizes the safety of foreign tourists and would take serious measures against those who violate the law.