Monday, July 8, 2013
[Press article] Keimyung University Dongsan Medical Centre
Access to adequate health care is an important concern, especially when working overseas and you are not fluent in the local language. Fortunately in Daegu there are several places catering to foreigners. Keimyung University's Dongsan Medical Centre located by Seumon Market has an International Health Centre to provide a vast array of services to foreigners.
Dongsan Medical Centre is easily located across from Seumon Markets east side. There is even a new station being built for the Line 3 Monorail directly outside. This is a large central hospital that has existed for decades serving the needs of both Koreans and Foreigners.
The hospital dates it roots back a century ago when the original Missionaries established roots in the community. Starting as a converted home the original services provided were that of a local Physician with another converted home beside serving as a Schoolhouse. These are both now Museums and are open to the public.
As the needs of the community outgrew the modest facilities of the small home, Dongsan Medical expanded into a larger purpose built site at its current location. After the Korean War it became the approved hospital for the US Army personnel stationed at the Daegu bases, and continued to grow over the years.
Dongsan is now the specialist English speaking hospital in Daegu. They have a dedicated International Health Centre on the third floor with fluent English speaking staff. If the services are more complex and require the need of other hospital depts the International Centre will liaise to arrange appointments and walk you to the appropriate department.
Although it is not necessary to specifically goto this hospital for any ailment, I was referred here once by a smaller local hospital as they lacked the necessary equipment needed for tests. Dongsan Medical is a state of the art hospital and can provide all kinds of diagnostics and imaging tests. The Specialist I was referred to also spoke perfect English.
Unfortunately their offices hours are only weekdays to 5pm. There are no after hours or Saturday services. As most Foreigners are working or attending classes during this time it can pose a bit of a problem. Appointments need to be arranged and are not always on a walk-in basis, although I was able to get a 'standby' appointment once after 4.30.
For after hours emergency services there is another useful helpline. By dialing 02-1339 you can reach an English speaking medical referral service 24/7. They are based out of Seoul but can provide an alternate number for Daegu so its useful to have this number programmed.
Dongsan Medical is easily reached by bus, subway, or walking from downtown. To reach the original Missionary Home and Schoolhouse look for some of the street signs on the east side (Its easier to reach if coming from Herbal Street and the Cathedral)
Here are their websites
There are also many pharmacies outside by the bus stops, some of whom speak good English.