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Sunday, August 9, 2015

Health Check or Spa Day?

Looks like I finally have some down time, everyone, so you get to hear about my interesting health check experience. Yay!

To be honest, it was kind of exciting... for a health check. This was the third health check I've had since coming to Korea. The first was in a gym, the second in a small hospital over in Sintanjin. This latest one was at Sun Healthcare International. The swankiest hospital I've ever experienced.

The reason it's so nice is because people go there for medical tourism. This means they travel to Korea for medical reasons, whether it be cosmetic medical reasons or more life-threatening ones.

I wasn't there for either.

First of all, this checkup was required by my school for all the staff. It was also paid for, which is probably the only reason I got to go to a place that looked like a 4 star hotel. Otherwise, I'd probably opt for a more affordable one, where it's perfectly normal to carry an open urine sample across a hallway (yup).

Sun Healthcare was a pleasant surprise after the first two. Before you begin all the screenings, you're lead to a changing room where you find the locker that matches your wristband number. The wristband is your key for the locker and for later (getting to that). Just hold it up, it unlocks, and change into some baggy scrubs (aka pj's) and slippers.

Next, blood sample time. I'm not particularly fond of having my blood drawn. I have a thing about needles being poked into the crook of my arm, call me crazy. But it certainly was the least terrible experience I've had. The sign up list is electronic for every test area. The wristband I talked about earlier? You just hold that up and your name goes on the list. I've heard that there is a similar system in many spas/saunas/jjimjilbangs in Korea. Made waiting to be jabbed by a needle seem more luxurious.

Once that was done, it was urine sample time. You'd think there wouldn't be much to say about this, or that I wouldn't want to talk about peeing in a cup, but you'd be wrong. Like I said, my last checkup involved peeing in a paper cup and carrying that cup across a hall. I could have tripped, run into someone, all kinds of disasters could have occurred. At Sun Healthcare, they have a two-way cabinet in the stall. You pee, put the cup in the cupboard, close it, and it "magically" disappears. Nice, right? No one has to see your pee but you and the professionals.

Everything else after that was pretty routine. Hearing test (done in a sound proof box), sight, height, weight, blood pressure, chest x-ray, and dental check. I have great teeth, by the way. I might have had to go through the awkward braces and tooth-gap phase in high school, but at least genetics has given me plaque resistant teeth (Thanks, Mom and Dad!).

Last thing, I had a short doctor visit. I was not expecting a guy close to my age, of reasonable attractiveness, to ask me personal questions, but hey, it's got to get awkward somewhere. Once that was over, my co-teacher and I headed out for a bite to eat. Easy Peasy.

I finally got the checkup results last week. Wasn't really surprised by the results. Could lose some weight (in my defense, I'd been on 2 flights a couple days prior, but still), but otherwise I'm in the normal range.

So, that's my story. One of these days I'll actually go to a spa or jjimjilbang here and tell you about that too.

Thanks for reading! :)

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