Health insurance has been made mandatory for foreigners aged 50 years and above seeking long-term stay in Thailand.
The insurance policy must offer up to Bt40,000 coverage for outpatient treatment and up to Bt400,000 for inpatient treatment.
This is one of the measures the government has introduced to ease the financial burden placed on state hospitals by foreigners, many of whom have not paid for treatment.
“The Cabinet has already approved the new rule,” Health Service Support Department director-general Nattawuth Prasert-siripong revealed yesterday.
According to Nattawuth, the new rule applies to both new applicants for the non-immigrant visa (O-A), which offers a stay of up to one year, and those wishing to renew their visa. Each renewal is valid for one year.
Overseas policies okay too
“Such health insurance is good for foreigners too,” Nattawuth said.
Foreigners can buy valid health insurance from longstay.tgia.org or if they wish to use health insurance that they bought overseas, they must ensure that the coverage amount is no less than what is required by the rule. “We are going to discuss with relevant authorities on to how to check the validity of health insurance bought from overseas,” Nattawuth said.
Asked about foreigners who cannot buy health insurance because their health risks are considered too high, Nattawuth said relevant authorities might consider requiring them to have higher deposits in bank accounts so as to make sure that they have enough to live in Thailand.
(Source: – The Nation)