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webzila

Ships Medical Center Excursion Review

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In 18 cruises I have never been to the medical center before but always wondered what it's like, how much it costs, etc.

Well, on the most recent cruise my wife decided to take an "excursion" there. It was kind of pricey but interesting 😉

She started feeling ill on the 2nd day of the cruise (a lot of cold symptoms but also wheezing - no fever. She was absolutely fine before and on the 1st day). I always get travel insurance so I sent her @$$ to the medical center right away and tagged along. Any consult cost is $125 to get seen by an MD.

 

I was impressed with the facility, the nurses, and doctors. I saw several rooms that looked like a hospital room with a bed, equipment etc.

My wife also saw what she described as a surgery room (I didn't see it). It also had a separate backdoor entrance + a large steel door with a lever and keypad. Just guessing that is their "morgue"

 

For basic illness which turned out to be early acute bronchitis they are well equipped to handle that and treat that.

My wife got a steroid via IV, antibiotics for the week and 3 visits for nebulizer breathing treatment. She felt better the next day and got the all clear.

They also did some CDC required test (2 times) - (Legionella Test)

All together it was around $500 which should be reimbursed 100% by the travel insurance I got.

 

All in all it was a fun trip to the med center but not something I want to do again.

At the stops in Mexico we went to the pharmacy and got several bottles of the same antibiotic as what we got on the ship - just to have in case of emergency in the future - it was $8 per bottle vs $50 on the ship.

Edited by webzila

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Very interesting! Thanks for sharing! It just goes to show you, you never know. 👍

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My dad had a massive heart attack on the Breeze several years ago. I’m a physician and happened to be on the same ship a few weeks later, so we took a visit to the medical center to thank them. I was actually impressed with their capabilities and how much they were actually able to do. They basically treated him the same way any hospital without cath lab capabilities and a long transfer time would treat him. Obviously there are some unique circumstances with being at sea, especially with the length of time to get to a hospital with the resources he needed, but he’s actually alive today because of their quick and excellent response. 

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I had a minor accident several years ago stepping out of the pool - I missed the step and fell face-first into the metal frame of a lounge chair (and no, I hadn't been drinking - I just didn't have my glasses on and didn't see the step down). All I remember of the next few minutes were blinding pain and crew members grabbing towels, ice, and loading me into a wheelchair. I was bleeding from my head, nose, and mouth, as well as my hand. They got me down to the medical center and the doctor did x-rays (the doctor was amazed my nose and cheekbone weren't broken) and closed the cut on my head with a couple of steri-strips. The worst part was having to get anesthetic shots into my finger and my fingernail removed (it was bent in a position that is NOT natural *shudders thinking about it*).  

 

Both the doctor and nurse were so nice to me and really worked to make me comfortable. I was impressed with the whole experience. As to costs, I wasn't billed for anything. In fact, I got a letter from GS that evening saying that all my onboard charges had been paid for (including the three designer purses I had bought the day before!) and an additional $250 dollars in onboard credit had been added to my account. I was shocked, but they definitely earned five stars for customer service that day. Would prefer to never go through that again though...

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Not as dramatic as the other "excursions" above, but a couple of years ago I fell while touring the Mayan ruins in Belize.  Nothing major, missed a step and skinned my knee pretty thoroughly.  Limped back on board - many crew members stopped us and offered help, asked if I was OK - yes, fine thanks, just clumsy.  Got to the cabin and realized that we only had small band aids in our kit.  Went to the infirmary, reassured them that I was really OK, and was able to purchase several 4x4 gauze bandages with adhesive.  Basically giant band-aids.  I think they were $1.50 each.  The nurse offered help when I was there, but I told him what happened and he told me that if it got worse or bothered me to come back, but he agreed with my first aid approach.

 

The facility reminded me of a free-standing ER you would see back home.  Several exam rooms with O2, EKG equip, X-ray machines, etc.  Seemingly well-equipped and very nice.

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On my last cruise I had to visit the medical center.  I too was impressed with their care.  Somehow I ended up with the flu and pneumonia.  They gave me breathing treatments and IV steroids and antibiotics.  I was up and about the next day after they administered another flu test and cleared me.  

They repeatedly remind you of the cost.  Honestly it's the reason I get travel insurance these days.  Most travel policies will require you to file your personal health insurance first.  Be sure to insist that your health insurance treats it as in-network care since you did not have the option to chose a provider.  My health insurance covered all but $100 co-pay that I filed with my travel insurance.  The $100 covered the cost of the policy but most importantly, I never had to worry about the bill.

 

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On 2/16/2020 at 9:56 PM, SRQbeachgirl said:

 

 

Both the doctor and nurse were so nice to me and really worked to make me comfortable. I was impressed with the whole experience. As to costs, I wasn't billed for anything. In fact, I got a letter from GS that evening saying that all my onboard charges had been paid for (including the three designer purses I had bought the day before!) and an additional $250 dollars in onboard credit had been added to my account. I was shocked, but they definitely earned five stars for customer service that day. Would prefer to never go through that again though...

Glad everything turned out for you okay and the outcome wasn't more serious. Sounds like the cruise line was afraid you might sue them for the slip and fall so they offered you all that upfront. Of course, accidents happen, but I'm sure they get passengers quite often who try to take advantage of the situation.

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I always wondered what it looked like, but never want to see first hand, so thank you for sharing! 

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8 hours ago, Alegeeter said:

Glad everything turned out for you okay and the outcome wasn't more serious. Sounds like the cruise line was afraid you might sue them for the slip and fall so they offered you all that upfront. Of course, accidents happen, but I'm sure they get passengers quite often who try to take advantage of the situation.

 

I thought exactly the same thing, though I would never sue for something that was my own clumsy fault. I'm definitely more cautious now! 

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On my second cruise I woke up around 4am with difficulty breathing and chest pain, scared I was having a heart attack at 34. Turns out it was costochondritis. Who knew? I was just thankful that I wasn't going to die on my way to Mexico. I think the visit to the infirmary and shots for a steroid and a painkiller cost about $300.

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I laughed some...   Basically I read ...  I have travel insurance ...so what the heck.   Once the cost was taken out of the equation this was just another adventure.

 

I am not going to lie...   I debated a LONG time on travel insurance.  The credit card I used had some benefits but not medical. I did call my medical insurance and family is covered but as "out of network" meaning I could still be stuck with a good part of the bill.

 

Long story short ...I did buy the insurance but still hurt paying money for something I hope never to use.

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1 hour ago, Drinal01 said:

Long story short ...I did buy the insurance but still hurt paying money for something I hope never to use.

I have the same feelings about our homeowners insurance. But it's an absolute must. Same with travel ins. It's an absolute must. 

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I agree...its just unlike homeowners I do have some coverage from medical and some coverage from credit card...   In the end I will went with travel insurance ...I get some of it back by now being able to use my AMEX card ($100.00 credit) rather than use Arrival+ card for travel insurance coverage.

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I tried to visit our last cruise but found it was closed due to an emergency somewhere else on the ship. It was interesting to see that backstage level (our waiter actually recognized us and asked us later if everyone was ok). My son had an allergic reaction to a nut on a dessert and I'd never experienced a food allergy before so I was a little overwhelmed what to do. Fortunately he only had a tiny amount and was just complaining of throat pain and his face was broken out so we self treated with Benadryl and he was doing good within an hour so we never went back.

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My teen son managed to hit his head where the ceiling is lower in the O2 lounge on a cruise. We went down to medical with him and an O2 staff member. It was after hours on a holiday. A doctor and assistant were there within about 15 minutes. The facility was well equipped and the doctor was great. My son left with about 6 or 7 stitches and some extra bandages. He went back within a couple days so they could check the stitches.

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I was on Royal Caribbean for my honeymoon.  Using the flowrider, I fell off as happens to just about everyone eventually.  The water pushed me back to the top.  I waited up there for the board to come shooting up and get it for my wife who was going next.  It whacked me on my toe pretty hard but I didn't think anything of it.  I stood behind and watched her go.  Glanced down at my foot and saw a decent amount of blood. 

 

Went to the little guard station they had next door.  Asked for some paper towels and a band aid.  She saw the blood and gave me a towel.  The moment that I put the towel on my foot I knew something was missing... My big toenail had been ripped clean off.  Haha.  They immediately ran me down to the Med Center.  Doctor grabbed a huge syringe I thought he was gonna inject me with, before I realized it was just to spray antiseptic around the area. Then made sure it wasn't broken and wrapped it up nice and professionally.  Told me to come back the next day and they'd rewrap it.  No charges whatsoever to me. 

 

Had some kind of guest services manager stop by the room and make sure everything went fine and wrote down my version of what happened for the incident.  Probably to cover themselves if I was to sue.  Honestly the worst part is that we still had 2 1/2 days on vacation and I was told I couldn't get it wet.  That meant the excursion we had booked for speedboats in Mexcio was out.  Swapped it to ATV's in the jungle instead.  Worst idea ever!  It meant my foot was squished into a sneaker.  It also meant I had to shift the ATV with the foot that of course was affected.  Even worse was that it had rained a bunch the prior day in Mexico, so it was very wet and muddy. Probably got just as wet if I had done the boats 😄

 

My favorite part was going to the buffet and asking for some saran wrap on the last sea day because I was so jealous of everyone going in the pools and stuff.  Got some odd looks when I explained what I'd be using it for...

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