The Moon Jae-in government will enhance the social safety net, build a lifetime health management system for the public, support the innovative growth of the healthcare industry, and respond to low-birth, aged society.
Min Hyung-bae, presidential secretary for social policy, presented the government’s health and welfare policy directions at the “2019 AMCHAM Healthcare Innovation Seminar,” organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea on Friday.
|Min Hyung-bae, presidential secretary for social policy, speaks at the “2019 AMCHAM Healthcare Innovation Seminar,” organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea on Friday.|
“The previous governments focused on economic growth. During those years, the attention on social policy remained minimal. Even though the nation has achieved economic growth, its investment lacked in health and welfare, labor, and education,” Min said.
“As a result, the quality of life in Korea dropped to the lowest levels among OECD countries, and we cannot expect rapid growth as before anymore. Korea is facing a structural crisis with slowing economic growth, worsening of inequality, the world’s lowest birth rate, and accelerating of the population aging,” he added.
Min said the Moon government established the “Moon Jae-in Care” to expand health insurance coverage in August 2017 and the first batch of a comprehensive plan for the national health insurance program in April.
To reduce medical burdens for people, the government expanded the scope of insurance-covered diseases significantly, raised the quality of medical care, and took measures to improve the sustainability of the health insurance, he further explained.
In detail, the government plans to raise the reimbursement rate of the national health insurance program to 70 percent by 2022, turn non-reimbursable medical care to reimbursable one, and reinforce insurance support for patient rooms at tertiary hospitals.
He also made it sure to redirect the focus of health and medical policies from treatment to prevention and investment for health enhancement. To do so, Min said, the government will give more discretion to primary medical institutions to care for chronic disease patients, expand infrastructure including community healthcare centers, broaden services to visit the elderly for medical care, increase support for mental health treatment, and raise capability to respond to new infectious diseases.
For the growth of bio-health sectors, the government will also build infrastructure for each stage of industrial development, ranging from technology development to approval, manufacture, and market release, the presidential secretary said.
He also noted that the government aims to actively respond to the structural crisis of low fertility rate and population aging.
“To make Korea a nation of innovative inclusiveness is the Moon Jae-in government’s new policy direction and core value,” Min said. “Through the expansion of social investment, the government hopes to realize inclusive growth and inclusive welfare -- growing the economy, as well as raising the quality of the people’s lives.”