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South Korean doctors, amidst a mass walkout, assert they’re overburdened and their concerns remain unaddressed.

Health NewsSouth Korean doctors, amidst a mass walkout, assert they're overburdened and their concerns remain unaddressed.
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Nepal online patrika , kathmandu | Ryu Ok Hada always wanted to help people, but now the South Korean trainee doctor has walked off the job and stands outside the hospital where he worked, holding his medical gown in his hand.

Park Dan, who recently realised his childhood dream of being an emergency physician, is also one of over 7,800 interns and residents who have resigned in a confrontation with the government, which threatens to arrest them.

Ryu and Park say the junior doctors, a crucial cog in South Korea’s highly regarded medical system, are overworked, underpaid and unheard.

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Hospitals have turned away patients and cancelled surgeries after about two-thirds of the country’s young doctors walked off the job this month in protest.

The young doctors say their pay and working conditions should be the priority, rather than the government’s plan to boost the number of physicians.

The authorities say more staff are needed to increase healthcare services in remote areas and meet the growing demands of one of the world’s most rapidly ageing societies.

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“The current medical system in South Korea, which is a great one, is run by making cheap trainee doctors keep grinding,” Ryu, 25, told nepal online patrika.

Senior doctors and private practitioners have not walked out but have held rallies urging the government to scrap its plan, with 400 gathering in Seoul on Sunday.

But the government’s plan to boost medical school admissions is popular, with about 76% of respondents in favour, regardless of political affiliation, a recent Gallup Korea poll found.

 

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