Sometimes, landing a teaching job is the easiest part of a long process towards making a transfer abroad. Once you have been approved to work in Taiwan, you will need to get a Working Visa and then an ARC. A health check is required to begin this process, the highlight of this article.
This article is written from my own experiences of having gone through this process twice now. It is not meant to be a substitution for any guidelines or rules on these procedures established by Taiwan. It is also not a holistic picture of each individual case. Please research carefully before making the plunge and I hope that this account helps provide some clarity as to the nature of this process.
Since moving to Taipei, Taiwan, I have done all my medical procedures at Wanfang Hospital (address below). This has been due simply to a recommendation from a close friend as well as the fact that they have an International Liaison Office (who has helped me on almost all my visits). The following is my account of a walk-through of the health check process at Wanfang Hospital.
Located directly at the only exit of Wanfang Hospital MRT Station (Because I always keep it simple!), Wanfang Hospital can seem pretty confusing to a first time visitor. When you enter the building, there will be the International Liaison Office directly to your right (adjacent to the doorway). If at any time during this process, you feel lost or confused, pop in and explain that you are a foreign teacher trying to do a health check for the first time.
What You Need to Bring:
- Your Passport and a copy (Always bring a copy of your passport to every Taiwanese agency)
- Two 1in, passport style photos (You can get these done in Taiwan at most photo shops; some places will even give you a disc with the image so that you can easily have them print more later)
- Vaccination Records (This saved me money as well as gave me the ability to skip certain parts of the exam)
- If you can, also bring a back-up photo identification card like a license or State ID (just in case)
- Approximately NT$ 2000
Starting at the beginning, if you have just walked into the entrance of the hospital, directly in front of you and right next to the escalators, there is a small desk with one or two hospital workers. Proceed to this desk and say this is your first time here. I find this desk less proficient in English; however you should be able to fill out a small piece of paper with logistics (passport number, residence, phone number, etc). This step is simply to help give you a way to register as you are not yet in the Taiwanese healthcare system.
If you are already nervous about the process, just head to the International Liaison Office (trust me, I won’t judge!)
Once you have your sheet filled in, they will point you over to the registration counter back behind this desk. Here they will check you in officially.
After this station, go up the escalator and immediately turn right and right again (Following along the walkway with the balcony edge). You will see a little clinic in the corner. This is your destination. Grab a number slip from the machine and wait your turn.
Once called, the office staff will help you go through the process. Now this is important: You want the health check for teachers. This form has a spot for height, weight, etc! If you get the other form then you will need to redo this process.
After collecting your photos and paperwork, they will send you downstairs to pay. Simply go back down the escalators, towards the payment counters near where you checked-in. Grab a number and wait to pay.
After paying, take your receipt back upstairs and go straight to the desk (no number collecting). From here, they will usher you into a room to take a blood sample and collect basic measurements, such as height, weight, blood pressure.
If you brought your vaccination records, you will get to skip the vaccination part of the exam. Of which, they will send you downstairs for an X-Ray.
Go down the elevator, turn left towards the pharmacy counter and proceed down the hallway. The signs will guide you to the X-Ray check-in desk. Here they will usher you to a changing room and direct you to which examination room you will be in. The entire process takes about 10 minutes and as quickly as you have changed into a dressing gown, you’re back out again getting into normal clothes.
Once again, go back upstairs. Here they will seat you to wait a few minutes for the doctor. He may ask some basic questions and if all goes well, sign your health check form.
The front desk will give you a day and a time to come back to collect your form; normally this is about 7-10 working days.
Some important notes:
- The health form is only good for a month, so be mindful of where you are in the Work Permit/ARC process.
- I would advise that you go early in the morning, as this clinic gets busier as the day goes on. They also close for lunch.
- This particular clinic closes around 4 and registration will begin closing available slots around 2:45 or 3:00, depending on how busy the clinic seems to be.
- When I arrived early in the morning, I find the entire process (start-to-finish) to be about 1-2 hours long. Waiting at the payment counter seems to take up a good portion of my time.
No. 111, Section 3, Xinglong Rd, Taiwan 116
+886 2 2930 7930
Transportation: Wanfang Hospital MRT Station