Foreigners Still Have to Pay More for COVID Tests in Some Hospitals

A woman receives a coronavirus test in Chonburi province on Jan. 20, 2021.

BANGKOK — At least five hospitals in Bangkok apply a “dual pricing” policy on their coronavirus tests, charging foreigners more than their Thai counterparts, a survey by Khaosod English has found. 

Although the price of COVID-19 tests have largely gone down in general since the first year of the pandemic – and a majority of hospitals charge Thais and foreigners the same rate – disparity in fees based on nationalities can still be found. 

The price for a coronavirus test at Ramathibodi Hospital is 40 percent more for foreigners, while Sriraj Piyamaharajkarun Hospital charges foreigners 25 percent more than Thai customers. 

Other hospitals who maintain the two-tier pricing system include the Urban Institute for Disease Prevention and Control, Vichaiyut, and Praram 9.

Here’s a comprehensive information on where to get tested for COVID-19, and how much you will have to pay:

Public Hospitals

Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital: Tests are around 2,200 baht, same price for foreigners. 

However, a nurse said that those without travel history to high-risk areas or symptoms should not come to this hospital for COVID tests, since almost every day, infected people are found there. 

“It’s risky, even with social distancing,” she said. “So for people who are just concerned, I recommend they get tested at private hospitals or drive-thru hospitals.” 

Ramathibodi Hospital: Around 2,000 for Thais, 3,500 for foreigners, or a 40 percent disparity. 

Siriraj Piyamaharajkarun Hospital: COVID tests only available for those with symptoms, travel history to high-risk areas, or previous contact with the infected. COVID-19 tests run about 5,000 baht to 6,000 baht, not including doctor’s fees and fees for medicine. 

The price for foreigners is an additional 25 percent. 

Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute: 3,000 baht, same price for both Thais and foreigners, but they may be free depending on whether the patient has symptoms or has a history of contact with the infected. 

Urban Institute for Disease Prevention and Control: Tests are 1,500 baht for Thais and 2,000 baht for foreigners. Reservations necessary.

Private Hospitals

Ramkhamhaeng Hospital: 3,500 baht for a Drive Thru service where doctors will swab your nose and throat, same price for Thais and foreigners. 

Walk-ins available. Patients who come in before 3pm will get their results within 6 hours, while patients who visit after 3pm will receive theirs the following day. 

Lab results will be sent via SMS, and documents will be sent via email or EMS at a later time. 

Vichaiyut Hospital: About 7,000 baht for Thais and an additional 1,300 baht for foreigners, or 8,300 baht.

Bangkok Christian Hospital: Tests cost 7,300 baht for both Thais and foreigners, but as of publication time Tuesday has run out of test kits. Check again in advance if you wish to go. 

BNH Hospital: 7,000 baht for both Thais and foreigners. Walk-ins welcome, results within 24 hours. 

St. Louis Hospital: Around 6,000 baht, same price for Thais and foreigners. 

Phyathai 2 Hospital and Phyathai 3 Hospital: 4,500 baht for both Thais and foreigners. Price already includes doctor’s fees, and results will take around three days.  

Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital: 4,500 baht for Thais and foreigners. Results within 24 hours. Reservations required. 

Samitivej Srinakarin Hospital: 4,000 baht for Thais and foreigners. Results within 24 hours. Reservations required. 

Samitivej Hospital Thonburi: 4,000 baht for Thais and foreigners. Those who are already showing symptoms may be eligible for a special price at the doctor’s discretion. Walk-ins available. 

Bumrungrad International Hospital: Only offers COVID tests for those that need documentation for flying overseas. Prices for both Thais and foreigners begin at 4,000 to 5,500 baht and do not include other unspecified fees. 

Paolo Phaholyothin Hospital: 4,500 baht, inclusive of all fees, for both Thais and foreigners. Walk-ins available, and results within one to two days. 

Praram 9 Hospital: Tests are 5,650 baht for Thais and 8,000 baht for foreigners. This fee does not include other tests that the doctor may see fit to prescribe.

Mongkutwattana Hospital: 3,500 for both Thais and foreigners. If a COVID test is needed for going overseas, they may be extra charges for additional tests, amounting to about 4,500 baht. Results available within one day.

Bangkok Hospital: Around 3,300 baht for a drive-thru service that includes lab results via email, and 4,300 baht for a test that includes documentation for flying overseas. Same price for Thais and foreigners. Reservations recommended. 

Piyavate Hospital: Same price for Thais and foreigners: 2,500 baht for a test, 2,700 baht for a test with a medical certificate, and 3,000 baht for a test with a medical certificate and Fit to Fly documentation. Walk-ins welcome, and tests results will be available within two days.

Walk-In Tests are Unavailable At: 

Rajavithi Hospital: Only treats those who are already showing symptoms. Costs will depend on the treatment needed. 

PatRangsit Hospital: Will only test Thais who have social security benefits registered at this hospital, at the doctors’ discretion.  

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