Hi, I’m Roman Lillie and today I’m talking to an American woman who has moved to Thailand because of health issues She actually finds it to be more affordable and a better level of care in Thailand than in the U.S… If you can believe that. And there’s a lot more coming up at the end of this video I’m going to tell you about other videos that I have coming up that I think you might be interested in and you can feel free to like and share this video if you feel like you’re getting some value from it or you Find it interesting and also. I’ll put a link in here so that you can support my videos by joining my Patreon team if you want to do that as well, so Here is Kellie, and then I’ll talk to you in a few minutes Alright, I’m so excited today. I’m talking with one of my favorite people ever Kellie McRae, and Kellie is an ex-pat who lives here. Although, you know, I was talking with someone else and I used ex-pat She didn’t love that term We can discuss if you even like that term or not but I’m here talking with Kellie who is from the U.S. who is now living here in Chiang Mai, Thailand and you know Different people come to Thailand for different reasons Kellie has a unique situation where she came here for a reason is a little different than some of the other digital nomads that I’ve come across She came here for affordable health care since we all know that in the U.S. It’s way too expensive. And it’s crappy. And the quality is maybe not that great. So diplomatic, maybe it’s not that great. I’m like, it’s crappy. Kellie’s gonna tell it to you like it is. I’m going to put a little bit of sugar on it Kellie’s like knock the sugar off, give it to you raw Exactly. So you have lupus. Yes, and why did you decide to leave the country, like what is that process like? Did people think you are crazy? Is the health care better here? You know like tell me how this came to be that you’re here in Thailand for health care?
Okay. So I got ugly diagnosis obviously lupus for those of you that have no clue is an autoimmune disease And it’s incurable and it does some funky things to your body And what was happening in the states was one, Insurance was all about how you actually got your care You don’t really get any input into your own body In your own care and even what doctors are able to go to because of this doctor is a great doctor But he’s not approved by your insurance carrier like a lot of the doctors won’t even do self pay, and if you did do self pay the cost is so Prohibitive that it’s like okay. I’ll just you know cower to my insurance company. Right, I don’t think a lot of people are making so much money in the U.S.. They just pay out of pocket for doctors I mean I know that I went to the doctor for some really basic stuff just to check out a question with my back It was hundreds of dollars even with decent insurance, yeah, so I can’t even imagine without that insurance How anyone can make it work especially with a condition like lupus. Right. Because you’re going to have, like I’m going to have ongoing care like forever today And I’m always going to be on some type of medication and one of the medications that I had in the U.S. without insurance one month was $946.47 a month So I can get, that’s an apartment, yes I can get all my care here like for I mean like literally I had to do an MRI last week, and it was actually an MRI MRA it was like $600, and that’s it. No bill, it’s done, it’s paid for, it’s finished, and when I go to see the actual doctor And I’ve got like four or five specialists that I actually see the most that I’ve paid is Roughly 800 baht which breaks down to about twenty four dollars U.S. that’s for a specialist. That’s the expensive specialist. That’s like a copay in the U.S. Exactly. Let alone a fee. Now here’s a question I think that if I’m just chillin in the U.S. or Canada or wherever I am and I haven’t been to Thailand I might think like, I don’t know is the care good? Are the doctors qualified? Do they speak English? Are the facilities nice? Yes. Are they? Yes. What is it, tell me. All of that. So the doctors, many of the doctors were trained in the U.S. as well as in their home country. So they have, believe it or not, innovations that we don’t have in the U.S. Like people, there’s a misconception that there’s great care in the U.S.. First of all the United States doesn’t even hit the top 20 as far as good health care is concerned First of all so it’s a misconception that there’s great quality healthcare in the U.S. There It really is like third-world status, but when you come to the third world they’ve been trained in the U.S. And they’ve been trained by their own countries and the things that can actually provide you with a lot of relief in the U.S. because you know I hope this isn’t too controversial for me to say on your on your YouTube. Let’s go there, let’s see. Alright. but the if it provides you with relief, if it provides you with a savings, if it provides you with preventative care your insurance carrier will not approve. And when you say that do you mean things like okay So I’m in a lot of natural communities and one thing that comes to mind when you say that to me is like marijuana So certainly medical marijuana. I think it’s a topic now that a lot of people are talking about with cancer Yeah. And a lot of different things, actually read something literally this morning not knowing it was going to come up. But about medical marijuana studies have been done They’re very positive. So I mean are those some of the treatments that like you’re thinking about? Yes. In the U.S.. It’s sort of still Controversial. Yes, I mean and not even so much that controversy, okay for example one of the I have, I have a Deficiency every now and again on my protein levels just because it’s just the nature of the disease right So if I were in the U.S., and I went to the doctor and they read that hey, you’ve got a protein deficiency They’re going to prescribe you something right. Here in Thailand, two different doctors said eat 3 egg whites a day Your doctors back in the states would never say that because the pharmaceutical companies are paying them to push pharmaceutical grade stuff. When you talk about marijuana the reason that marijuana hasn’t been approved in the states yet is because they can’t figure out how to keep everybody from growing in their backyard so they can make money on it So if it provides you with natural relief. Like marijuana is, the studies have been shown time and time and time again, It alleviates pain. So why are we waiting to make it legal? It grows out of the ground naturally. We’re not doing it because it won’t make enough money for pharmacy and for insurance and for food and for agriculture That’s why they’re not approving it. One of the things that brought me here was strangely a television show on healthcare where The doctor said to me, hey we want to do a colonoscopy and endoscopy and not to get graphic, but that means they’re going to go in this end and in that end and you’re going to be knocked out Right, so I’m watching this. It doesn’t really sound like fun. It doesn’t sound like fun. Right, and if they damage you on the inside Weirdly going down or up it can take up to two years for that to heal on the inside, okay? So now you’ve got new problems that they caused Trying to figure out what’s wrong with you. Well here in Thailand they actually have a camera the size of a pill that you can swallow. You put a little camera pack on your hip, and you go about your day. And that’s your colonoscopy and your endoscopy. So I asked them in the states, hey, can I have that? it’s oh that’s experimental. Um, No, it really isn’t. But because it’s non-invasive, and Because. I was gonna say the notion of that being experimental. It seems like a fine experiment right like what’s the worst-case scenario. You swallow it It doesn’t work, you poop it out. Sorry. That’s kind of gross. Exactly. You poop it out, it’s over, right like that So that’s my kind of experiment. That’s easy. Okay, but you only had to pay one doctor and You had to poop out, you had to dig around in the toilet to get that camera cause that’s exactly how that works, okay? But in the states you gotta give Whoever it is that’s the specialist with the camera go this way and a specialist with the camera that can go this way you got to have an anesthesiologist Then you got to have the crap that makes you crap, Sorry. Because that’s when you got to clean it all out. But then you also have to have potentially pain meds because there’s you know shoving stuff down your throat And you’ve got to do like it’s all this extra money By the way like I like that Kellie’s so serious but she’s like talking about this. I’m still on the thing about the doctor fishing the The doctor don’t fish it out, you fish that out. oh, you fish it out. That’s experimental, I don’t know about that. Let me tell you something. When your insides start swelling up like marshmallows you’ll fish in poop. If they’re gonna give you solutions, you’re gonna be like, oh, I’m all up in that. What is that? No. Move that corn over. okay? No, no. I’m done. I hope it never comes to this y’all. Like I would never I hope I never come to this Listen guy just got to do I mean to be honest I quit making jokes and it’s kind of funny But like honestly for choice is fishing through some poop Versus like having all these invasive procedures listen, you get the gloves on and you go for it I think is what’s going to happen. Yes. So I came to Thailand with seven pounds of medical records and about six figures worth of medical debt When I came to Thailand my diagnosis was roughly seven months old and I’ve been hospitalized Here twice now it has been twice two or three times. I’m losing count The most expensive hospital stay that I had was roughly $1,200 that included a hematologist a cardiologist a general practice doctor and They have lupus specialists here which basically breaks down to rheumatology, but here like the focus is just on lupus that was with a, sorry No, and I just want to add, and when she’s telling you these figures these are numbers no insurance This is just the total total cost not subsidized by anyone This is a full figure, full price fee (exactly) that you’re paying. Yeah, okay, not like after co-pats or whatever Nope, this is uninsured, self pay I left with all of my prescription meds that I needed and I am a vegetarian and so they did a vegetarian diet, and it’s so funny because Like they’re so pro vegetarian here that when they brought me the initial menu and it had meat on it And I was like oh, no I’m
Vegetarian like the girl was so apologetic that I had to go back and review if she had said derogatory things on my mom I Was she was like oh, so sorry so so and I was like relax, it’s just a vegetable versus a pig it’s always all good, but I mean the like and when I told the and you get real nurses here by the way, you don’t get nurse practitioners or Physician’s assistants you get real doctors and real nurses and they take the time to actually answer All of your questions, no matter how long it takes so you don’t feel like you’re rushed through and And this is the kicker. They actually know who you are like they straight up remember you. I went last week, I had a doctor’s appointment every friggin day and one of the nurses like the last time I was in the hospital was like the end of March the first part of April and The guy walks over. He goes. Do you remember me?, and I’m looking at him like No, and he says you came in you had the heart issues, and that was you know, it’s this new hospital That was the end of March, the fact that he remembered me and remembered what my situation was That is like huge you go to your primary care physician and half the time they don’t even remember your name And they’re your primary care physician in the states You just don’t get that quality (Right) that you get here. I for sure think that in the states definitely, they know your name from looking at the chart. Yes They don’t know your name from if they saw you on the street look like and maybe you get an uh patient number 2752 Nice to see you today. Right. But it is nice that you come there are places that can give you sort of a customized level of service I think this is what I want to talk about today the fact that there are different options and alternatives and there are people who are coming to different countries for different medical services. And I don’t really know about medical tourism until I got to Thailand and started hearing about it You know the fact that for a lot of people. It’s actually cheaper to take a flight And get medical care in a foreign country versus doing it in the U.S.. Honestly, It’s kind of sad that that’s kind of where we are right now in a health care system in the U.S.. That’s kind of where we are So I’ve appreciated this chat with Kellie I’m going to provide a link to you in the description which also has Kellie’s YouTube page which she gives a lot more information Whether you have stuff about lupus, she’s also a business coach And she does everything this woman is just amazing so you can check it out for yourself and see all the amazing things she has to offer and Feel free subscribe to my YouTube channel I’m going to have more chats coming up with different digital nomads and ex-pats who are living all over the world and I didn’t ask You I mentioned this in the beginning. Yes, or no, do you consider yourself an expat? Oh, you might go back to the U.S. one day. No. No you know. I’m going back to U.S. to visit. That’s it. I’m not letting them fools kill me. no Well there you have it But, I consider myself an immigrant because that’s what we call foreigners in our country so. So she’s an immigrant in Thailand Right now um you can check her stuff out and then thanks for watching Bye! Alright, so that was Kellie. I just love sitting down and talking with her. She always remains, so positive and upbeat Regardless of what’s going on. I find it so inspirational. And coming up I have a series of chats coming up with Carolina She is a digital nomad who’s been out here living abroad traveling and making money For over three years and she has so much information to provide it’s amazing We sat down for one chat but I’m actually planning to turn it into a series of talks She just had so much information to give I couldn’t even fit it all into one little episode So you have that to look forward to so make sure you subscribe so you don’t miss any of this that’s coming up