Leading Thai hospitals all in on high-tech

Medical tourists take note: Two Thai hospitals are setting the pace for cutting-edge care by embracing 5G, robotic surgery, genome testing and other high-tech advances to better serve patients from Thailand and around the world.

Bumrungrad International Hospital, based in Bangkok, was featured several years ago on 60 Minutes, the American television news magazine, because of its high standards and popularity among global medical tourists. Bumrungrad announced last week that it intends to be a leader in smart healthcare 5.0 this year.

It will achieve this by focusing on robotic surgery and genetic testing. The hospital is using the da Vinci surgical system, a robotic advance, to perform operations on multiple organ systems. It is also using genetic testing to help prevent cancers, heart disease and other conditions that can have a hereditary basis.

“We thrive to be a Thai hospital that meets international safety standards in delivering healthcare services and the best treatment to every visitor,” Artirat Charukitpipat, Bumrungrad’s CEO. “We do not solely aim to make a profit as we also take corporate social responsibility into account.”

Thailand’s first, oldest and largest hospital, Siriraj Hospital, was featured recently as a model for 5G adoption and use at a technology trade show in Barcelona, Spain, the Mobile World Congress. Siriraj treats many international patients, but its patient base is more local as it is a public hospital.

“Our vision of creating a 5G Smart Hospital will improve Thailand’s public health sector and increase the efficiency of the healthcare system,” said Dr. Prasit Watanapa of Siriraj. “In December last year, we launched the first 5G Smart Hospital project in Southeast Asia.”

“Within a few years, the technology adopted at the Faculty of Medicine will be expanded to other projects transforming Siriraj Hospital into a role model for other public hospitals in Thailand,” he added.