Health Policy Manag.  2017 Mar;27(1):80-83. 10.4332/KJHPA.2017.27.1.80.

Unmet Healthcare Needs Status and Trend of Korea in 2015

  • 1Department of Public Health, Yonsei University Graduate School, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Institute of Health Services Research, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Preventive Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


The proportion of people who reported unmet healthcare needs is an important indicator to measure the access problem in healthcare service. To examine current status and trends of unmet needs in Korea, we used data from four sources: the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHNES, "˜2007-2015); the Community Health Survey (CHS "˜2008-2015); the Korea Health Panel Survey (KHP "˜2011-2013); the Korean Welfare Panel Study (KOWEPS "˜2006-2015). The proportion of individual reporting unmet healthcare needs as of 2015 was 12.6% (KNHNES), 11.7% (CHS), and 16.3% (KHP, as of 2013). Annual percent change which characterizes trend for follow-up period was -9.4%, -3.4%, and 7.6%, respectively. The proportion of individual reporting unmet healthcare needs due to cost was 2.8% (KNHNES), 1.7% (CHS), and 4.6% (KHP). The proportion of household reporting unmet healthcare needs due to cost was 1.2% (KOWEPS). Annual percent change was -9.0%, -14.9%, 9.4%, and -18.2%, respectively. Low income population reported about 5 times more unmet needs than high income population. Therefore for decreasing the unmet healthcare needs, strategies focusing on low income population were needed.


Unmet healthcare needs; Past trends; Income

MeSH Terms

Delivery of Health Care*
Family Characteristics
Follow-Up Studies
Health Surveys
Nutrition Surveys
Population Growth
Socioeconomic Factors
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