Utah Korean Health Care Information

Welcome to Utah Korean Health Care Information website. This website was created to provide Korean students in Utah with helpful health care information. The website is for everyone’s benefit and will improve more with everyone’s help. If you have any questions or additional information, please feel free to contact us. The prices and fees listed on this website is based on November 1, 2010 and it can be changed. Please make sure to call the appropriate facilities to double check their current prices before you go.

Health Care in the United States

Are you having difficulties adjusting to your life in America? You probably miss your family more especially when you get sick in a strange foreign land. Health care in America is very different from that in Korea, and it is hard to receive immediate medical attention for a low price. Hospitals will accept and treat patients regardless of ability to pay and bill later so you may be bombarded with endless bills afterward. Unlike Korea, health insurance is private and insurance companies have different policies and have high premium

In the United States, many schools require international students to have health insurance. Students have the option of student health plans offered by the schools or can get health insurance from their home countries. Generally, student health plans are very suitable for students, but it’s important to read and understand the policy.

When you buy health insurance, make sure to read the policy to understand the extent of your health insurance to know how much is covered by your insurance provider. Generally, regular health insurances do not cover OB/GYN, optometry, or dentistry service, and you may have to buy separate health insurance for those services. Dental care is especially expensive, and it may be better to receive treatments in Korea if you need to take your wisdom teeth out or need extensive dental treatments.

If you need medical attention

Just like in Korea, you need to receive medical treatment by a doctor and get medicine from the pharmacy. In the United States, the separation of pharmacy from medical practice is very distinct, and you need a prescription from a doctor for a lot of drugs. The drugs that do not require a prescription are called over-the-counter medicine/medication, and those can be purchased off the shelf at pharmacies or drugstores. Over-the-counter medicines consist of simple cold medicine, pain killers, vitamins, anti-acids, and anti-biotic ointment. You can have access to over-the-counter medicine at places like Wal-Mart 24 hours a day, but it’s convenient to have simple medication at home at hand.

When you go to the doctor’s office, you can only go to designated doctors and be covered certain treatments depending on your insurance. Most international students can use the student health center on campus. The dependents may also qualify for student health plan and should inquire the school for details. Even student health plans can be expensive and sometimes cover only the basic requirements. If your basic health plan does not cover dentistry, OB/GYN, or optometry, you may benefit from the list of providers on this website. Sometimes your school may require you to receive a physical exam before you can enroll. You can find information on places to receive a physical exam for a reasonable price on this website.

Unlike Korea, you have to think twice before you head to the emergency room in the United States. At emergency rooms, patients are treated in order of severity of their state. If you do not have a severe medical problem, you may have to wait a long time to receive treatment and may be charged with a very expensive bill. In addition, the cost of using the ambulance is very expensive and should be used with discretion.

When you become ill or injured, please call a hospital or clinic to talk to a nurse. Some facilities offer interpreters. Make sure to find out if there is any fee to using the interpreters to avoid being charged later.