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Not surprisingly, Thailand has long been a popular tourist destination. Known as the “land of smiles”, visitors revel in the country’s incomparable pad thai, idyllic beaches, full moon parties, and sacred spaces. More surprisingly however, Thailand has developed a reputation for its “long and successful history of health development”. Medical tourists flock to Thailand every year and the introduction of a universal insurance scheme in 2002 has significantly increased life expectancy and improved access to services across the country.
So, Operation Groundswell’s healthcare program will travel to Thailand and explore first-hand how age-old traditions and modern transformations have helped shaped healthcare for the country’s diverse population. Journeying from the bustling capital of Bangkok to the cultural mecca of Chiang Mai and tiny “hill-tribe” villages in the country’s north, we’ll interact with health practitioners, NGO workers and people of all walks of life. We’ll explore big cities and quiet sanctuaries, enjoy delicious food and examine healthcare in Thailand.