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A Message From Our Executive Director

A Message From Our Executive Director

The third goal laid out in the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals is “to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being at all ages,” and the World Health Organization (WHO) has identified quality essential health services as the primary means to achieve this goal. As a result, countries all around the world have committed themselves to achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC) that ensures everyone has access to the health care they need without financial burden.


National Health Insurance (NHI) was first introduced in Korea in 1977, and just 12 years later the NHI system was expanded to cover all citizens in 1989. Through ceaseless effort to further improve this system, Korea stands at the forefront of achieving UHC by reducing the financial burden of healthcare costs on its citizens while providing higher quality healthcare service to more people. We are also fully committed to taking action against the COVID-19 pandemic through the use of our robust health care system and responsive e-government system.


At the center of this health care system in Korea stands the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRA). Using an advanced ICT system, HIRA sets the scope and standards of services covered by national health insurance, efficiently manages healthcare resources, and evaluates the cost and quality of healthcare services. Furthermore, we provide support to increase the government’s health insurance coverage and strengthen policies that enhance primary health care. We also produce a wealth of healthcare-related big data and provide access to it for research or other academic purposes. Not only that, but in response to the COVID-19 pandemic we provide essential information to the public, healthcare providers, and the government as well. HIRA is also responsible for designating hospitals so that the public can safely receive COVID-19 testing and treatment with ease of mind.


HIRA currently shares its experience with various members of the international community and we will continue to strive toward this kind of international cooperation in order to contribute to the achievement of UHC and the betterment of healthcare services worldwide. We hope that you take an interest in and help to support us in all our endeavors.

Thank you.


서명


Sun Min Kim, M.D., Ph.D.
Executive Director, Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRA)
Republic of Korea