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Affordable TKR in New Zealand?

Discussion in 'Knee Replacement Pre-Op Area' started by Eleanor, Jul 27, 2009.

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  1. Eleanor

    Eleanor New Member

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    Hi - I'm an American living on an island in the South Pacific (tough, huh?) and need TKR on both knees. I'm 62, too young for Medicare, and don't have health insurance. Was all set to go to Mexico for knee surgery in April but then swine flu broke out and we decided not to risk it. Now I'm looking at New Zealand, because it's closest to us, though I know the surgery won't be cheap there. How do I go about finding the lowest-cost but good surgeon/hospital in NZ as a private pay patient? Preferably NOT in Auckland. I just need to be pointed in the right direction and I'll take it from there. :pzld: Fa'afetai tele lava (many thanks)!
     
  2. Jamie

    Jamie Administrator

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    Hi, Eleanor! Welcome to BoneSmart.

    We have several folks on the forum from Australia and I think a couple that check in now and then from New Zealand. Your question is going to have to be answered by one of them. In the meantime, have you Googled KNEE REPLACEMENT NEW ZEALAND? That might be a start and you could research any surgeons that you found. Good luck in your search! Post here any time you have a question or concern as you prepare for the surgery! We'll be here for you.
     
  3. Judles

    Judles Alpha

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    Welcome to Bonesmart, Eleanor! Good Luck! Let us know what you decide!!! :)
     
  4. Texas

    Texas Alpha

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    Welcome Eleanor, good luck to you, I hope you find someone to fix your knee. Its terrible with no Ins I agree. Just make sure you do your research....
     
  5. Josephine

    Josephine Forum Admin and Mother Hen Administrator

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    I found one!

    US$29,500 which includes

    • return flights from North America (West Coast)
    • hospital stay of 5-6 days in a single room
    • hotel accommodation after the operation
    • all surgical procedures and expected medical costs
    • Implants (manufactured in the USA)
    • physical therapy (in-patient and out-patient)
    • Aftercare in your hotel (nurse visits)
    • contingency insurance (to cover any serious adverse events).
    Medtral New Zealand
     
  6. Eleanor

    Eleanor New Member

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    Hi Josephine - Thanks very much for your input! I had already googled "knee replacement New Zealand" and found Medtral, as you did. Their price is actually quite high, and includes return flights from the U.S. and upscale accommodations, neither of which we need. Also, their two hospitals are both in Auckland, a big city, which we are trying to avoid. We're trying to avoid the middleman/person and go straight to the hospital and surgeon, as we were able to with the hospital in Mexico. I'm finding it's hard to find recommendations online, so I'm kind of flying blind here... Just hoping someone else on BoneSmart has had experience with TKR in New Zealand and can make surgeon/hospital recommendations.
    Thanks again! Eleanor
     
  7. One NZer

    One NZer Senior

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    Hello Eleanor,
    I have just been into St Georges Hospital in Christchurch S.I. for a HRKR (late March) with an Orthopaedic Surgeon from the Leinster Orthopaedic Centre, there are 5 to choose from. The Orthos are in the same grounds as the hospital.
    The waiting time is long, it took 6 months from trying to make my first appointment until my actual op... by then I was desperate. So I can only recommend that you get some dialogue underway soonest.

    The phone number for the Centre is 0064 3 355 4563 or Fax 0064 3 355 3216.

    My costs for a hemi, inclusive of everything, hospital, surgeon, anaesthetist, theatre, drugs, in-hospital x-rays and physio were NZ$16,00.00 total.

    I hope this helps you.
     
  8. Max Wallace

    Max Wallace Graduate

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    get the best surgeon and don't worry about cost, you cant put a price on being able to walk , stand, or just live without pain.
     
  9. Judles

    Judles Alpha

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    Yay max!!!:thmb::pnc:
     
  10. One NZer

    One NZer Senior

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    Thank you for the warm welcome, Max Wallace and Judles.

    If the Orthos from the Leinster Centre weren't the best in town I wouldn't have bothered registering with bonesmart.org and replying. The waiting list is so long because they are the best.
     
  11. mvo

    mvo Member

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    Hi Eleanor

    Perhaps have a look at QE Health - that might suit you - they only do hips and knees in the surgery area - I had my LTHR there and could not be happier.

    http://www.qehealth.co.nz/home/home.htm

    Looks a bit new-ageish from the website but it has a well regarded hospital - see
    http://www.qehealth.co.nz/home/why_choose_us.htm

    It is not in Auckland :)

    I want to go back there for my next hip. I saw one of my "wardmates" recently - she had a knee replacement and she was also very happy.

    All the best!
     
  12. Eleanor

    Eleanor New Member

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    Thanks to Jamie, Judles, and Texas for your welcomes -- and to Josephine for your input. And a special thanks to One NZer for your recommendation of St. George's Hosp., I'll definitely check them out!
     
  13. Eleanor

    Eleanor New Member

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    And another thanks to MVO (Monica?) for recommending QE Health. It's funny, I met a woman from NZ at the beach here in Samoa this past weekend and her mother had had a great experience at the old Queen Elizabeth Hosp. some years ago -- made it sound wonderful with the spa and all. I discovered on the Internet that it is now called QE Health and has just been taken over by Southern Cross. (Is that a good sign or a bad sign?) Anyway, I'll definitely check them out too. thanks!
     
  14. mvo

    mvo Member

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    QE Health has been run as a private hospital for 10 years. I think a takeover by Southern Cross is ok... When I was there, negotiations were in progress and I think there were going to be provisions to encure that the "special character" was maintained. It all comes down to the people, in the end - if the surgeons (I think there were 6 of them) and staff stay, then all will be well.

    Since my LTHR I have met lots of people who have been there, and have heard nothing but praise.

    Anyway, take a look though their website. Not the best designed website in the world, but then I am fussy that way :)

    Happy to answer any questions you may have,
    Cheers,
    Monica
     
  15. Max Wallace

    Max Wallace Graduate

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    I was replying to Eleanor the original post not you.
     
  16. Eleanor

    Eleanor New Member

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    Max --
    I never thanked you for your comment. You're right about not being to put a price on living without pain, my knees have been getting progressively worse over the past 15 years or so, and now they're REALLY bad!
    However, I am too young for Medicare, have no insurance that would cover at least part of the op. in the U.S., and currently live in a country with very cheap but substandard healthcare. I have to come up with the cash myself. We have limited savings, and so I HAVE to worry about cost! Can't afford the surgery as a self-pay patient in the U.S. -- though I hear prices are coming down because the U.S. hospitals must now compete with "medical tourism" (cheap prices in new, great hospitals in mostly third-world countries like India).
    If anyone has information about U.S. hospitals cutting costs on knee and hip surgery I would be very interested in hearing about it! :bow:
    All the best, Eleanor
     
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