Korean doctors see income surge amid intensifying physician shortage
简介Amid a shortage of physicians and the second-lowest doctor-to-population ratio among the Organizatio ...
Amid a shortage of physicians and the second-lowest doctor-to-population ratio among the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries, South Korean doctors have seen a substantial increase in their income, making them some of the highest earners in the medical field across surveyed OECD nations.
The Korean government plans to address the country's doctor shortage by increasing medical school enrollment quotas, a move prompted primarily by a market structure that limits the number of physicians through such limits on medical school enrollment.
According to the 2023 OECD Health Statistics report, doctors in Korea out-earn their counterparts in 27 other member countries that submitted relevant data. Following Korea, the top earners are found in the Netherlands, Germany, Ireland and the UK. The US was among the countries that did not provide data.
According to the report, the annual earnings of salaried specialists in Korea averaged $192,749 in 2020 when adjusted for purchasing power parity, which factors in local living costs. This figure surpassed the OECD average by 60 percent. Meanwhile, salaries for Korean general practitioners ranked sixth.
In 2020, self-employed doctors in Korea earned an annual income of $298,800, taking PPP into consideration. Of the seven countries that provided data, this figure ranked second behind Belgium, where self-employed doctors earned an average of $337,931 in 2021.
Korea is also seeing a steep growth in doctors’ income compared to other professional occupations, according to data released by the National Tax Service. The average annual income of self-employed specialists, including physicians, practitioners of traditional medicine and dentists, was 269 million won ($218,000) as of 2021. The figure stood at 173 million won in 2014, showing a 55.5 percent increase. In contrast, the average annual income of lawyers in Korea showed only a 12.7 percent increase over the same period. Lawyers earned an average of 102 million won in 2014, which increased to an average of 115 million won in 2021.
Korean doctors' comparatively higher salaries when compared to other OECD nations and other professions appears to stem from the relative scarcity of medical professionals in the face of significant demand for health care services.
In 2021, Korea had 2.6 active clinicians per 1,000 people, including practitioners of Korean traditional medicine. This figure surpasses only Mexico's 2.5 clinicians among OECD member states, according to the report. When traditional medicine practitioners are excluded, Korea ranks at the bottom among OECD nations. Leading the list were Austria, Norway and Germany with 5.4, 5.2 and 4.5 clinicians per 1,000 individuals, respectively.
Korea also reported a low number of medical school graduates, with 7.3 per 100,000 people, ranking third lowest after Israel and Japan. This figure is nearly half of the OECD average of 14 graduates per 100,000 people.
Despite the limited number of medical school graduates, the demand for medical services in Korea remains elevated. In 2021, Korean nationals sought outpatient care consultations at an average of 15.7 times per person, the highest frequency among OECD nations and 2.6 times the OECD average of 5.9.
The Korean government seeks to increase the medical school enrollment quota, which has been fixed at 3,058 since 2006 due to fierce opposition from doctors’ groups. If approved, the new quota would take effect starting in 2025.
Health Minister Cho Kyoo-hong said Friday that the government would allow some universities to increase the quota in 2025 "if they have room to increase their capacity." "Given the pressing nature of this matter, we will aim to increase the quotas for existing medical schools. We will also continue to review the plan to open new schools in the provinces," Cho added.
The Ministry of Education announced on Sunday that it would send an official letter to 40 medical schools nationwide and conduct a survey related to the expansion of admissions quota over two weeks. At least two-thirds of medical schools nationwide are expected to request an increase in the enrollment quota, according to multiple sources.
South Korea is set to record the lowest number of first graders entering elementary school next year ...
A South Korean golf club has caused controversy online for its policy of restricting services for th ...
A concerning trend in South Korea's public health profile emerged in recent data released by th ...
- Itzy to drop new album, go on second world tour
- Trump vows to kill Asia trade deal being pursued by Biden if elected
- [Herald Review] NCT 127 takes inspiration from ‘Matrix’ for 3rd tour
- S. Korean battery makers' R&D investment up 12.5% in Jan.
- [Korea Beyond Korea] Chae Man
- [Contribution] Korean food captivates global palates
이재명 "여·야·정 정책협의체 제안…간병비 급여화 서둘러야"
Fire breaks out at SK On's plant during pilot run in China
Fifty Fifty's Keena marks group's 1st anniversary with apology
S. Korean battery makers' R&D investment up 12.5% in Jan.
Seoul City to operate autonomous night bus
Trump vows to kill Asia trade deal being pursued by Biden if elected
- Spike in camping enthusiasts in Korea, yet camping etiquette lags behind
- Samsung Biologics sees highest
- Jeju's autonomy is model for Western Sahara: Morocco
- Hyundai’s ‘Uni Wheel’ system gives more room for different car designs
- Seoul shares close more than 1% higher on extended Israel
- Trilateral cooperation unaffected by US election outcomes: Goldberg
- Yoon orders increased defense of public digital infrastructure
- Hyundai Elevator, Erbud team up to rebuild Ukraine
- Labor unions slam government efforts to attract more foreign workers
- Korean Air orders 20 Airbus A321neo aircraft
- Marking 105th anniversary of independence, Poland highlights growing ties with Gyeonggi Province
- [Herald Interview] Korea
- [Korea Beyond Korea] Yale sociologist and BTS fan researches K
- 인요한 "이준석에 통크게 제안…돌아와 총선 중책 맡아달라"
- From Itaewon to Hollywood, Park Seo
- [Korean History] In 2004, serial murderer with goal to kill 100 was stopped at 20
- Kyobo Life chairman wins top industry honor
- Samsung C&T gears for 2023 Smart City Expo World Congress
- LX Holdings CEO promoted to president
- 'Justice will prevail': G
- [Hello Hangeul] Americans seeking to visit Korea learn the language in LA
- S. Korea retracts bans on disposable cups at cafes, restaurants
- Celltrion posts record earnings in Q3, buoyed by upbeat biosimilar sales
- 선관위, 이준석 유튜브 멤버십 중지 요청…"정치자금법 위반 소지"
- US envoy vows to make clear 'inextricable' link between N. Korea's human rights abuses, threats
- Seoul offers 10,000 sets of portable SOS emergency bell ‘Zikimi’
- 'Omega X will not give up': Boy band returns to share message of hope
- AmCham hosts AI forum for SMEs
- Talks on Goryeo artifact's repatriation resume a decade later
- Samsung CEO highlights AI safety research