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HomeWorldS. Korea's doctors' organisation to stage walkout, rally on June 18

S. Korea’s doctors’ organisation to stage walkout, rally on June 18

Seoul, June 9: South Korea’s top doctors’ organisation said on Sunday that it plans to stage a walkout and a rally later this month in protest of the medical school quota hike, amid the lingering protest by junior doctors that has lasted nearly four months. The Korea Medical Association (KMA) said it will stage a walkout and a rally on June 18, based on the result of a vote carried out last week on whether to launch collective action, reports Yonhap News Agency.

Over 90 per cent of the participants supported the “strong protest” of the KMA in the vote carried out from Tuesday to Friday last week, the lobby group added. “We intend to form a dedicated committee for the medical community’s protest and employ every possible method to launch a comprehensive resistance,” Lim Hyun-taek, who heads the KMA, said. The latest collective action came after the government finalised the admission quota hike of some 1,500 for medical schools late last month, marking the first such increase in 27 years.

About 12,000 trainee doctors at general hospitals have left their worksites in protest of the government’s decision to raise the number of medical school seats, causing disruptions in services at major hospitals. In an apparent effort to persuade trainee doctors to return to hospitals, the government has recently allowed them to seek jobs at other medical clinics or go back to their training hospitals by withdrawing a return-to-work order and suspending administrative steps to punish them. But junior doctors were mostly seen as reluctant to return to their worksites despite the gesture.

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