Is it time for expat annual health checkup?

Expat health Checkup - Expat hero

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You’ve been living the expat dream in Chiang Mai for a while now. Life is good – the weather, the food, the lifestyle. But when was the last time you really checked in on your health?

If it’s been more than a year then it’s time to book your health checkup.

Many hospitals and clinics in Chiang Mai cater specifically to expats and offer comprehensive health screening packages (full list here). Basic tests check things like blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and thyroid function. More advanced tests can scan for heart disease or signs of cancer.

Prices range start from just 2,000 baht depending on how extensive you want to go. Peace of mind about your health is worth the investment. They can spot changes, address risks, and make sure you have the information and care you need to continue living life fully in your adopted city.

Its better to be precautionary than miss early signs of something serious!

As an expat living abroad, your health should be a top priority. Regular medical checkups, especially as you get older, are key to catching potential issues early and maintaining good health.

  • For those over 50, annual checkups are highly recommended.
  • Even if you feel perfectly healthy, get checked out.
  • Typical exams will check things like blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, vision and hearing.
  • The cost for a full physical with blood tests in Thailand is usually a fraction of the price compared to western countries.

Your health and wellbeing are worth investing in. Make that appointment today – your future self will thank you!

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Cost and Frequency

In Chiang Mai, a basic health checkup typically ranges from 2,000 to 5,000 baht. How often you need one depends on your age and health risks.

For most expats, once every 1-2 years is a good rule of thumb. If you have any chronic conditions or are over 50, you may need more frequent checkups.

Don’t put off health care just because you’re in a foreign place. Regular checkups are one of the best ways to maintain your health and quality of life as an expatriate.

Physical Exams

An annual physical exam gives your doctor a chance to check on your overall health, identify any concerns early on, and make sure you’re staying on top of important screenings.

For men over 50 and women over 40, health organizations recommend certain cancer screenings like colonoscopies, mammograms, and prostate exams. Your doctor will evaluate which tests are appropriate based on your medical history and risk factors.

They’ll also check your blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and other indicators to look for signs of conditions like heart disease or diabetes.

What to Expect During an Expat Health Screening in Chiang Mai

Here’s what you can expect during a standard expat physical:


A health screening typically includes blood work, urine tests, and basic vital checks. Blood work will check things like cholesterol, blood sugar, liver and kidney function. Urine tests screen for infections. Your height, weight, blood pressure, and pulse will also be measured.

Doctor Consultation

After your tests, you’ll meet with an English-speaking doctor to review the results. They will check for any issues and provide recommendations to keep you healthy. Early detection of conditions like diabetes or high blood pressure is key. For those over 50, certain cancer screenings may also be suggested.


An annual physical is a good time to ensure your vaccinations are up to date. The doctor can check if you need boosters for things like tetanus, MMR, or flu. They may also recommend vaccinations for diseases more common in Thailand like Japanese Encephalitis, Hepatitis A and B, or Rabies.

Peace of Mind

While health screenings are not mandatory, they provide peace of mind that all is well or allow for early treatment of any medical issues. For expats far from home, an annual check-in with a doctor is especially reassuring.

Finding a Reputable Healthcare Facility for Checkups

There are excellent hospitals and health clinics in Chiang Mai with English-speaking doctors and staff. Do some research on facilities like Chiang Mai Ram Hospital, Bangkok Hospital Chiang Mai, or the Chiang Mai Medical Hub.

Check reviews from other expats online or ask in local Facebook groups. Facilities with experience treating foreigners may be better equipped for any language or cultural barriers.

Check your health insurance policy – is the cost covered?

Contact your health insurance representative to check if your current health insurance plan covers routine medical checkups, tests and screening.

Many plans may only cover you for emergency care, if checkups aren’t included you’ll have to pay for the full cost out of pocket, but it’s worth a phone call.

Because you’re worth it

Your health is worth the investment. Early detection through blood work, physical exams, cancer screenings and other tests can help your doctor identify and monitor risks.

Some hospitals in Chiang Mai like Bangkok Hospital and McCormick Hospital offer health screening packages for expats that include common tests like blood work, urine, stool, chest x-rays, EKG, blood pressure and physical exams. You can view the directory of Hospitals and medical centres in Chiang Mai here. They can create a custom package based on your age, health needs and doctor’s recommendations.


So there you have it. As an expat living in Chiang Mai, your health and wellbeing should be a top priority. An annual health checkup, especially once you hit your 40s and 50s, is well worth the investment.

Catching any issues early can save you a world of trouble down the road. The clinics that cater specifically to expats understand your unique needs and the challenges of navigating healthcare in a foreign country.

They aim to provide high quality care with staff that speak fluent English. While the costs are often higher than local Thai hospitals, for the peace of mind that you’re getting the best care, the price is worth it.

Your health is the most valuable asset you have. View our directory of Hospitals and Medical Centres in Chiang Mai and get your appointment booked in. Why wait?

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