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Long Stay Visa for Health Rehabilitation Program

Visitors from most western countries can arrive in Thailand without a visa and get a 30-day “visa on arrival” stamp in their passport that allows a 30 day stay in the Kingdom. This is the normal process for tourists who typically stay only a week or two. Foreigners wishing to stay longer are required to obtain a visa before entering the country. The 30-day visa on arrival can be extended by 15 days. But longer stays are not permitted unless you leave Thailand and apply for a longer stay visa in another country and then enter on that long stay visa.

However, there is a convenient exception to this rule. Visitors who are undergoing medical treatment at a hospital in Thailand can apply for a long stay visa called a Non-immigrant Visa “O-A”. This visa is normally issued to foreigners wishing to retire in Thailand. But it is also issued to visitors undergoing “Health Rehabilitation Program” in hospitals or health centers. The medical center applies for this visa on your behalf. More information at the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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One Response to “Long Stay Visa for Health Rehabilitation Program”

  1. » Three hospitals now offer visa extension services - The Medical Travel Site Says:

    […] Three leading private hospitals in Bangkok are working with Thai immigration to make it even easier to extend your stay for medical treatment purposes. Thai immigration code has a special clause allowing for long stay visas for health rehabilitation. And to make it even easier, Bumrungrad, Bangkok International and Samitivej hospitals have each established visa extension service centers in their facilities. What makes this particularly effective is it is in conjunction with Thai immigration. An immigration officer pays a visit each week to process applications for extensions and if all is in order the extension is granted on the spot. Since this type of extension requires the medical facility to sponsor the applicant, the patient has very little to do other than complete their personal information and sign the form. The hospital’s visa concierge does the rest. No need to navigate through Bangkok’s busy streets and wait in line at the immigration office. It is all handled within the cool air conditioned confines of the hospital. […]

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