Mortality Among Foreign Nationals in Chiang Mai City, Thailand, 2010 to 2011
Article first published online: 11 OCT 2012
© 2012 International Society of Travel Medicine
Journal of Travel Medicine
Volume 19, Issue 6, pages 334–351, December 2012
How to Cite
Pawun, V., Visrutaratna, S., Ungchusak, K., Mahasing, S., Khumtalord, C., Tipsriraj, S., Chenwittaya, C., Guadamuz, T. E. and Wisniewski, S. R. (2012), Mortality Among Foreign Nationals in Chiang Mai City, Thailand, 2010 to 2011. Journal of Travel Medicine, 19: 334–351. doi: 10.1111/j.1708-8305.2012.00654.x
- Issue published online: 5 NOV 2012
- Article first published online: 11 OCT 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 25 JUL 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 25 JUL 2012
- Manuscript Received: 26 MAR 2012
Up to 65% of travelers to less developed countries report health problems while traveling. International travel is an increasing concern for health practitioners. To date, there have not been any published analyses of mortality amongst foreign nationals visiting Thailand. Our objectives are to examine the magnitude and characterize the deaths among foreign nationals in Chiang Mai, a popular tourist province in Thailand.
The study commenced with a review of the Thai death registration. Death certificates were retrieved, reviewed, and classified by the causes of death. Basic statistics and proportionate mortality ratio (PMR) were used to describe the pattern of deaths. Standardized mortality ratio (SMR) was used to assess the excess mortality risk among foreign nationals.
Between January 1, 2010 and May 31, 2011, there were 1,295 registered deaths in Chiang Mai City, of which 102 records (7.9%) were foreign nationals. Median age of decedents was 64 years (range 14–102 y). Female–to–male ratio was 1 : 5.4. The highest mortality was among Europeans (45.1%). Most of the deaths were natural causes (89.2%) including 36 cardiac diseases (PMR = 35.3) and 20 malignancy diseases (PMR = 19.6). Deaths due to external causes were low. The SMRs range between 0.15 and 0.30.
Communicable diseases and injuries were not the leading causes of death among foreign nationals visiting Chiang Mai, Thailand. It is essential that travelers are aware of mortality risk associated with their underlying diseases and that they are properly prepared to handle them while traveling.