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Healthcare in South Korea - What Are Some Of The Benefits

Updated on Aug 29, 2023 · By ENKOR

If you are considering staying in Korea, you may have a lot of questions about Korean healthcare. You might be asking yourself, “In the event of an emergency, would Korean paramedics and EMTs take their shoes off before entering a person’s house?” Sorry, impulsive thought. In reality, you might be asking whether or not Korea has a good healthcare system. This article is here to tell you Korea doesn’t just have a “good” healthcare system, it has one of the best in the world. Here’s what Korea has to offer:

Universal Coverage

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The great thing about the Korean healthcare system is that everyone has access to it; this includes foreign residents. Every citizen and foreign resident must register for the National Health Insurance program (NHI). This universal coverage ensures that everyone regardless of age, income level, and employment status has fair access to the essential healthcare services they need, thus encouraging a healthier society and population in Korea.

Comprehensive Services


South Korea is currently taking a holistic approach to healthcare, so the country is offering a broad range of services: hospitalization, outpatient care, prescription medications, preventive services, rehabilitation services, hospice and palliative care services, mental health services, dental care, traditional Korean medicine, and so on. Various services dedicated to both acute and chronic conditions are offered, ensuring that individuals can receive the care they need for their diverse healthcare needs.

High-Quality Healthcare

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Korea is becoming renowned for the quality of its healthcare. This is thanks to the country’s outstanding medical institutions and highly trained healthcare professionals. This is also thanks to Korea’s technological advances, medical research and developments, quality assurance and regulations, patient-centered care, international accreditations and recognition, low infection rates, clinical specializations, and continuous medical education. With these combinations producing such quality healthcare, it is no wonder Korea is seeing a rapidly increasing number of medical tourists.

Efficiency and Accessibility


The efficiency and accessibility of the Korean healthcare system are also worthy of note. Korea’s advanced healthcare infrastructure, electronic medical records, single-payer model, 
streamlined administrative processes, coordinated care, short hospital stays/visits, and more make the Korean healthcare system extremely efficient. The large, extensive network of medical institutions, universal coverage, efficient referral system, and 24/7 emergency care also contribute to the great accessibility of the Korean healthcare system.

Low Costs


Due to a combination of things such as the single-payer model, risk pooling, cost-sharing mechanisms, government regulations, and so on, the cost of healthcare in Korea is relatively low even with the high quality of healthcare and advanced technology Korea offers. This competitive pricing is another reason for Korea’s increasing rates of medical tourism.

Preventive Focus


Public health data has made it more and more obvious that healthcare systems around the world need to adopt more preventive healthcare practices; curing and treating an illness or disease is good but preventing it altogether is great. The Korean government has noticed the importance of focusing on this care sooner rather than later and has begun strengthening some of the policies it has put in place. This means more emphasis and funding for preventive care. Focusing on preventing the issue before it happens has led to Korea becoming a healthier society.

Technological Advancements


It is no secret that Korea is a very technologically advanced country, so it may come as no surprise to hear that Koreans use some of the most advanced technology while providing medical care. This includes technology that makes the transfer of information easier and technology that helps digitize medical records. Korea’s technological advances have not only greatly increased the quality of Korean healthcare but also have greatly increased both the efficiency and accessibility of Korean healthcare.

Medical Tourism Hub


The number of people visiting Korea for medical tourism has grown at an astonishing rate. Korea’s amazing medical professionals, world-class medical institutions, advanced technology, and competitive prices have made Korea the ideal place to receive medical care and even specialized care. Whether it is cosmetic surgery or cancer treatments, many foreigners are traveling very far from their homes seeking the expertise of the Korean healthcare system.

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