Queen Vadhana hospital expands clinic network for insured patients

Friday, 12 April 2013 From Issue Vol. XXI No. 15 By  Warunya Thongrod

Sriracha’s Queen Vadhana Memorial Hospital has opened a fourth Pattaya-area clinic for customers using Social Security insurance.

Hospital insurance director, Dr. Thanes Jadwattanakul announced the Naklua Soi 12 office at a March 29 briefing on changes to social security rules attended by hotel and business operators at the Eastern Grand Hotel. Queen Vadhana already operates clinics in north, central and south Pattaya.

Dr. Thanes Jadwattanakul.Dr. Thanes Jadwattanakul.

The hospital is one of many that Thais and foreigners paying into Social Security can use for health services. In order to provide better service, and relieve congestion at the Sriracha facility, Queen Vadhana operates small clinics around the area. The hospital currently has 270,000 registered customers using Social Security.

The clinic expansion comes as the government takes steps to reduce the financial burden of health care on employers and workers. In January, the government extended the reduction in Social Security taxes put in place after 2011’s flooding crisis, calling it an offset to the impact of the increased minimum wage that took effect last year.

By law, companies must contribute 10 percent of an employee’s salary into the Social Security fund, with the employer and worker each paying half. For the balance of 2013, that rate will hold at 8 percent, with employers paying 4 percent, or a maximum 600 baht.

At the same time, the amount of medical services covered by insurance has increased.

Nongnuch Mongkolsawat, chief of Chonburi’s Social Security office in Sriracha, told the meeting that the government-insurance program will now pay a maximum 1 million baht for treatment, up from 500,000 baht. Insurance holders also will be able to have annual checkups covered.

Finally, as a way to stimulate employment, the Social Security office is working with local banks to offer employers low-cost business-development loans, Nongnuch said.

Employers with 50 or fewer employees can borrow up to 2 million baht while larger companies can borrow 4 million to 8 million baht. Participating lenders include Bangkok, Krungthai, Kiatnakin, Land & House and Thailand Islamic banks.

Queen Vadhana Memorial Hospital’s new Naklua Soi 12 clinic can be reached at 038-945-3428.

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