Gov’t, doctors move toward compromise

Apr 09, 2024, 10:37 am

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Source: Yonhap News

AsiaToday reporters Jeong Min-hoon & Hong Sun-mi

Attention is focusing on whether the standoff between the government and doctors on quota expansion plan will take a new turn after the April 10 general elections. As the government, which had been sticking to its plan of increasing the annual medical school admissions quota by 2,000, has turned to the position that discussions can be made if the medical community presents a reasonable and unified opinion, while doctors’ groups have decided to come up with a single plan for the medical community after the general elections, the possibility of compromise between the government and the medical community is expected.

Health Minister Cho Kyoo-hong mentioned the possibility of adjusting the size of the medical school quota hike at a government response meeting on Monday. “The plan of boosting the medical school admissions quota by 2,000 has been carefully reviewed based on scientific research and made through sufficient and extensive discussions with the medical community,” the minister said, adding, “If more rational and unified alternatives are presented based on scientific grounds and logic, the government can discuss it in an open manner.”

Medical groups have hinted that they will hold a joint press conference by gathering organizations that have been speaking out, centered on the Korean Medical Association (KMA).

The presidential official reiterated that the government remains open to discussing an adjustment to the number 2,000 if the medical community proposes a unified opinion based on scientific and reasonable grounds. However, the presidential office said it has no plans to defer the planned increase of medical school admissions set to start next year. “The government has never reviewed it and has no plans to review it in the future,” the official told reporters at the presidential office.

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