South Korea to prohibit intern doctors from practicing without job registration

Intern doctors in South Korea who have been on strike will face consequences if they do not return to their training hospitals by April 2. The protest against the plan to increase the number of medical students has caused disruptions in healthcare services, with major hospitals experiencing significant financial losses.

Deputy Health Minister Jun Byung-wang has warned that intern doctors will not be able to participate in training in the first half of the year if they do not register for jobs by the deadline. The ongoing strike, which began on February 20, has led to surgeries and other medical services being cancelled or delayed at major hospitals.

In solidarity with the interns, medical professors at major university hospitals have also started resigning. Despite efforts to resolve the standoff through negotiations, the government has allocated additional medical school admission seats to universities, indicating a firm stance on the plan to increase student intake.

The strike by trainee doctors has forced major general hospitals to temporarily close wards and rearrange staff. Hospitals like Asan Medical Center and Seoul National University Hospital have incurred significant financial losses, with some temporarily shutting down wards to manage the crisis. The situation remains tense as talks to end the strike have yielded little progress.


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