South Korean Defense Ministry Pledges Additional Military Doctors to Civilian Hospitals Amid Strike

Seoul - The South Korean defense ministry has announced its readiness to deploy more military physicians to civilian hospitals upon request, aiming to mitigate the impact of the widespread strike by trainee doctors. This move follows the ministry's initial dispatch of 20 military doctors to support general hospitals grappling with staffing shortages due to the ongoing protest.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the defense ministry is committed to addressing the escalating needs of general hospitals amid the mass walkout. The trainee doctors' strike, protesting the government's proposal to significantly increase medical student admissions next year, has persisted since last month, raising concerns over potential disruptions in medical services.

Jeon highlighted that the recent deployment of military doctors is designed to ensure that civilian medical facilities continue to operate effectively, with the defense ministry leveraging its pool of approximately 2,400 military doctors to provide necessary support. He reassured that this assistance would not adversely affect military operations.

In addition to deploying doctors, the defense ministry has opened the emergency rooms of military hospitals across the country to civilian patients. This initiative has been in place since February 20, and as of Monday noon, 200 military hospitals have treated around 200 civilian patients, demonstrating the military's role in sustaining healthcare services during the strike.

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