Khon Kaen University doctor proposes the research work from which the Government authorizes reduction of medical expense for patients with cerebral aneurism. Patients can now have more access to treatment. Cases of disabilities from the disease or death will decrease.
Cerebral aneurysm is the disease that urges the patient to visit the doctor when they have cerebral hemorrhage, which is a condition requiring immediate treatment, for the hemorrhage risks recurring that can lead to death or disability. Treatment may involves operation for clipping the aneurism or coiling, depending on each patient’s lesion. Nowadays, treatment can be done by placing spring coils, which result in good outcome and leave a small cut, as well as more possibility to be done in difficult area; however, with relatively higher expense.
Up to now, the patients having the gold health security card in Thailand cannot be reimbursed for the treatment of this disease. Therefore, these patients do not have access to treatment by spring coiling owing to limitations in terms of budget. This means the operation has to be done by skull opening, which may not be effective as expected. Moreover, this kind of operation risks disability and death.
Srinagarind Hospital of Khon Kaen University, by the Center of Excellence for Cerebral Aneurysm has produced research work on the worthiness of treatment with coiling for this disease. The project has been supported by the Health System Research Institute (HSRI). The researchers collected retrospective data from the patients in Thailand for over 10 years and the data of Srinagarind Hospital patients for over 5 years. The qualitative research analyses were conducted and the result showed that the treatment of the disease with coiling is worthwhile and can reduce the rates of disability and death.
Doctor Pitchayen Duangthongphon, a neurological expert of Srinagarind Hospital related, “The research team of the study project on the worthiness of treatment with coiling for this disease analyzed the data before Assoc. Prof. Amnat Kitkhuandee, M.D. presented the result at the National Health Security Office that the study verifies the worthiness of the treatment with this method. NHSO thus approved the project and now authorizes the patients holding the gold health security card to receive medical treatment fee for operation with coiling as of October 1, 2021. NHSO’s announcement says that the coiling can be reimbursed at an amount of more than 10,000 baht per coil. One patient needs 4 coils and so the reimbursement amounts to over 50,000 baht. Formerly, patients holding this card could not be reimbursed and had to pay over 100,000 baht for the overall treatment.”
Assoc. Prof. Amnat Kitkhuandee, M.D., an expert in neurological surgery of Srinagarind Hospital said, “Srinagarind Hospital established the Center of Excellence for Cerebral Aneurysm with an aim to bring the utmost benefit to the people, for each year there are more than 100 cases of patients with this disease coming to Srinagarind Hospital, who need to be operated on. Only 10% of these patients can receive treatment by coiling, for the surgery expense is roughly 100,000 baht. This is a problem if the patient cannot afford it, and it means some patients do not have access to medical treatment. This limitation was the rationale behind the research project, and the outcome shows the worthiness of the treatment of this disease by the coiling method, especially when thinking in terms of the disability or death the disease may cause. One part of this research has been accepted for publication in the Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery, which has the Q1 Impact factor of 5.836.”
Therefore, patients holding the gold health security card can from October 1 this year be reimbursed for the operation with coiling. The research on the worthiness of cerebral aneurysm treatment with coiling is truly useful for patients who have constraint in health coverage. Thanks to the National Neurological Surgery College under the Royal Patronage for the support of the project.