Thailand’s public health officials will question personnel at a private hospital in Bangkok regarding the denial of admission for an unconscious Taiwanese tourist which ultimately resulted in the tourist’s death.
After learning of the incident, Public Health Minister Cholnan Srikaew ordered the Department of Health Service Support (DHSS) and the National Institute of Emergency Medicine (NIEM) to conduct an investigation, according to DHSS director-general Dr. Sura Wisetsak.
On December 8, the Facebook page “Yak Dang Diew Jad Hai (Limelight Generator) Return Part 6)” was the first to expose the case.
The Taiwan Tourism Bureau reports that the deceased, who was identified solely as Chen, was a member of a group of nineteen that had traveled to Bangkok. On December 7, he notifies the tour leader prior to embarking on solitary travel, but subsequently sustains severe injuries in a car accident.
At 1.50 a.m. on December 8, a volunteer rescuer from the Ruamkatanyu Foundation reportedly discovered Chen injured in the middle of the road on Phatthanakan Soi 50, according to the Facebook page.
Following cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), he became incapacitated and was subsequently transported to a private hospital situated 500 meters away. A supervisor and a nurse in the emergency room of the hospital, however, reportedly denied him admission and advised that he betransported to a public hospital.
According to both employees, Chen’s care, who was a foreign national not accompanied by any family members, could incur costs that the hospital might not be able to recover.
Chen later died of his injuries at Sirindhorn Hospital, where the initial responders transported him, as stated on the Facebook page.
Dr. Sura stated, “An investigation will be conducted to determine whether the hospital’s patient assessment principles comply with the government’s Universal Coverage for Emergency Patients policy.”
“Also being considered in the investigation is the evaluation of transferring one patient to a different hospital.”
Critical emergency patients are incapacitated individuals who necessitate immediate medical attention subsequent to their rescue, as per the NIEM classification.
Dr. Sura stated that it is untenable to deny treatment to such a patient, and that doing so also violates the Medical Facilities Act, BE 2541 (1998). He added that the hospital personnel involved could face imprisonment for up to two years and/or fines of up to 40,000 baht if found guilty in this case.
Additionally informed of the situation is the minister of tourism and sports, Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol. She stated that she had requested that the relevant agencies devise more effective preventative measures to ensure that such a tragic incident did not occur again.
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