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Medical professors to join strike

Posted September. 05, 2000 12:28,   


With the negotiation between the government and the medical associations hitting a brick wall, the professors at medical schools around the nation have decided to discontinue their treatment of patients starting on September 5, prolonging the medical crisis at major hospitals, which are closing their doors to patients.

The medical professors at major schools such as Seoul National, Koryo, Yonsei and Kyung-Hee universities conferred in separate meetings on September 4 and decided to discontinue treating patients and join the walkout on September 5, according to the decision made on August 30 by the National Medical Professors Association.

The professors revealed that such a walkout would be terminated only if the government proposes a sincere measure that could satisfy medical professionals¡¯ concerns. However, as some of the medical professors have volunteered their services for emergency patients or severe cases of illnesses and with the formation of a ¡°True Doctors` Group" by certain specialists, the planned walkout will not bring medical treatment at hospitals to a grinding halt.

Meanwhile, in an unpublicized meeting between the government and the medical associations, President Kim Dae-Jung reportedly urged a quick return to the negotiation table, stressing he would establish a ¡°Welfare and Medical Development Task Force¡± under the Prime Minister`s Office and under his direct control, according to his pledge during the televised press conference with the three representatives from the three broadcasters.

Song Sang-Keun songmoon@donga.com