J Korean Med Assoc.  2012 Sep;55(9):812-814. 10.5124/jkma.2012.55.9.812.

Shortage of public healthcare personnel, is it a problem of number of doctors?

  • 1Seoul Crystal Skin Clinic, Seoul, Korea. hjihwan@naver.com


In 2012, the Korean government and various civic groups are insisting to increase in the number of Korean medical graduates by 20% to 100% because of the shortage of public healthcare doctors. However, we have to think of the real point of what makes the pulic heathcare system. In fact, Korea is the country with the least public spending on health care within the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Moreover, the problem with Korean public healthcare are many and profound; regional disparity of medical personnel including doctors and nurses, out-rageously low spending on the public healthcare sector, wrong allocation of public health doctors in lieu of compulsory military service, and no coordination between the public and private health care sector, which thus indicate a very complicated problem with numerous variables. The proper way to solve this problem would be to understand these variables and act accordingly.


Public healthcare; Number of doctors; Public health doctor

MeSH Terms

Delivery of Health Care
Health Care Sector
Military Personnel
Public Health


1. Research Institute for Healthcare Policy. A study of current state of the public health doctors. 2011. Seoul: Korean Medical Association.
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