Health Policy Manag.  2019 Sep;29(3):374-378. 10.4332/KJHPA.2019.29.3.374.

Household Out-of-Pocket Payments and Trend in Korea

  • 1Department of Preventive Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Institute of Health Services Research, Yonsei Universty, Seoul, Korea.


After the announcement of Moon Jae-in Government's plan (Moon's Care) for Benefit Expansion in National Health Insurance in August 2017, it is necessary to monitor the effects of the policy, especially household out-of-pocket payments (OOP). This paper aims to observe the current status and trend of OOP in Korea. Current health expenditure (CHE) was 144.4 trillion won in 2018, which accounts for 8.1% of gross domestic product (GDP) increased 9.7% from the previous year. Although GDP's share of CHE has been close to the average of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries, the public fund's share was 59.8% of the total in 2018, which was lower than the OECD average of 73.5%. OOP's share was 32.9% in 2018, which decreased from 37.4% in 2008. The share of OOP of non-covered services was 20.0% in 2018, which decreased from 22.9% in 2008. The share of cost-sharing with third-party payers was 12.9% in 2018, which decreased from 14.5% in 2008. The OOP of non-covered services was significantly decreased in hospital and inpatient curative care, but the OOP of non-covered services was significantly increased in the medical clinic. The effect of Moon's Care was not showed in OOP through the results of 2017 and 2018, but further monitoring is needed because the Moon's Care is progressing and the observational period is short.


Household out-of-pocket payment; Money; Health expenditures; Trend; Korea
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