Thursday, May 06, 2004

Had my health exam yesterday at Ch'eng Ch'ing Hospital. They took my NT$1100, photocopied my passport, took my height and weight, checked my eyesight (is the "E" facing up? down? to the right? to the left?), took my blood, asked me some questions (Do you have any chronic diseases like high blood pressure, heart disease, etc.? Are you allergic to any medications? Have you ever had an operation?), took a chest x-ray, and I was on my way in less than 5 minutes.

One of my colleagues speculated that this is all a racket to appease the doctors and hospitals who have been complaining for years about how National Health Insurance has taken away their profits. So maybe we're seen as a cash cow for the Taiwanese medical industry. Turnabout's fair play, I suppose: Taiwanese are often viewed as a cash cow by U.S. university administrators. (Gives a whole new twist on the concept of people from other cultures as "the Udder.")

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