Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Small Clinics In Taiwan
You can visit a clinic with or without an insurance. If you are married to Taiwanese, own a business, work legally or you are a student, it is pretty much mandatory to have health insurance card. The monthly cost of it is about 650NT and it protect you from spending too much in case something much worse than a flu happens. If you are just a tourist, or work illegally and get your visa from visa runs, then you might not have an insurance card. You should not worry about it though - you will still be able to see a doctor.
When you visit a clinic for the first time, bring your ID (ARC preferred if you have one, if not, your passport) and health insurance card if owned. You will need to fill a form with your basic information. If you do not understand it, ask kindly for help and registrant will be eager to help you. This takes about 10 minutes after which you are registered with the clinic. In the future you will just need to say your name when you are going to see a doctor (and show your health insurance if you have one.)
Clinics here are overall clean and doctors are very friendly. You can even ask to get yourself a flu shoot or help you with some medicine that is harder to get to be put with your prescription - nothing illegal mind you, but things like med that can help you sleep better or lower your stress. Some clinics are over popular and there are lots of people waiting, so you might be even waiting for 1 hour and longer if you are unlucky. Entire visit with a doctor just takes few minutes.
Once doctor is finished with you, you will still need to wait for your prescription to be filled. Every clinic has a pharmacy and all the medicine is included with your visit. You do not need to pay separately for any medicine, which is awesome. You will usually receive medicine for about 3 days, after which you need to visit a clinic again if you do not feel well. I don't like to visit a clinic again, so I kindly ask doctor to prescribe more medicine for me and I just stop using it if I feel better. They usually agree to it, but it will cost about NT50 per day of extra medicine.
Same things apply to other kind of doctors, such as opticians and dentists. I will be doing some check ups with dentists soon, so I will write another post later this year, but it pretty much the procedure applies everywhere in the island, even hospitals.
The overall cost that you are going to spend on clinics:
NT200 - visit and medicine if you have insurance card
NT100 - if you want a shot to speed up your recovery
NT500 - if you do not own an insurance card.
If you are university student, visit your university clinic - usually it is free of charge.