Friday, July 07, 2006

$3 office visit

This post is off topic in that it isn't about IVF. It is about my recent trip to the dentist in Bangkok. I had a tooth ache so I went to the dental center at Bumrungrad International Hospital (they have a fertility center, so perhaps this is vaguely on topic). Bumrungrad is perhaps the most famous of the big private hospitals in Bangkok that are all known for outstanding medical care at amazingly low prices. I had been to Bumrungrad's dental center before to repair a broken filling. That was a great experience, quickly and expertly handled, for the handsome fee of $35 U.S.

This time I suspected something more involved than a quick repair of a filling. Sure enough, the tooth under one of my crowns had gone bad and I needed a root canal. I didn't have an appointment but they have several dentists on staff and normally there is one assigned to handle walk-in emergencies, which was me. One person ahead of me so I took a seat. 20 minutes later I'm in the dentist chair, then over to x-ray. Five minutes later doctor confirms from the x-ray that the roots have gone bad and gum is inflamed. The good news is no cavity around the base of the crown so no need to replace it, just drill through, do the root canal and patch it up. 40 minutes later the procedure is done.

Now the price:
Doctor's fee: 4,200 Thai baht ($110 U.S.)
Materials: 3,800 Thai baht ($100 U.S.)
Office visit: 110 Thai baht ($3 U.S.)

That's the full price. It includes the follow-up visits to do another round of cleaning and packing with medication, and then another for the permanent filling after the doctor is satisfied everything is completely healed.

Amazing, $3 for the office visit! And these facilities are far superior to any dental office I ever visited in America. That plus the added bonus of wonderful hospitality.

And when I went back for the second round there wasn't even a charge for the office visit that time. I guess the original $3 fee covered it.


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