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Doctors threaten another strike

Posted July. 24, 2000 13:28,   


The Korean Medical Association, which has seemed somewhat content and was not considering another nationwide walkout, has done a turnaround and once again is threatening to throw the nation into the eye of the storm.

A KMA protest July 23 in the front yard of the government building in Kwachun City was attended by about 12,000 medical doctors in the Kyongin area, along with medical students from various medical schools nationwide. The day`s gathering was held for the purpose of the "abolishment of the detrimental medical reform and the release of the KMA chairman."

Through a press conference, the spokesman for the KMA demanded a special clause in the revision to pharmaceutical reforms concerning medication falling under the anti-toxin variety, the release of the KMA chairman and removal of the association`s leadership from the wanted list, the guarantee of higher doctors` fees, a pledge of medical insurance financial support by the government, the reinstatement of the medical delivery system, and the censure of certain members of the Administrative Welfare Department.

Meanwhile, about 1,000 pharmacists belonging to the Korean Pharmacists Association gathered at their district office in the Seocho District of Seoul and called for the government to adopt a policy that could guarantee the survival of neighborhood pharmacies.

"Should the government railroad the distorted medical reform, we have no choice but to close down about 80% of the neighborhood drugstores," a spokesman for the KPA said.

The KPA further demanded the right to sell general medication in pill form in single units, and the legislated prevention of exclusive cooperation between the medical facilities and pharmacies next door, among others.