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Information of the Life in Korea

National Health Insurance

Overview of National Health Insurance

Overview of National Health Insurance

Korea operates a national health insurance system that requires citizens to pay a fixed insurance premium according to their income level. Subscribers to the national health insurance can access medical services at a low price if they are sick, give birth, or simply want to have a regular medical check-up. All citizens are required to subscribe to the national health insurance, with the exception of beneficiaries of medical aid. Subscribers to the national health insurance system can be categorized into local subscribers and employee subscribers. All employees of businesses, employers, public officers and teachers are categorized as employee subscribers. Other subscribers and the family members supported by employee subscribers are categorized as local subscribers. The subscription of employee subscribers to the national health insurance is handled by the employers, with 50% of the insurance premium being paid by the employers and the remaining 50% paid by the subscribers. If subscribers use the medical services at hospitals, the health insurance fund contributes to a certain portion of the medical fees, reducing the burden on subscribers.

Foreign residents who are required to subscribe to the national health insurance

Foreign residents who are registered and work at businesses where employee subscriber schemes are applied, or foreign residents who are appointed as public officers and teachers, are granted the status of employee subscribers. Foreign residents who are registered and who are not categorized as employee subscribers may gain the status of local subscribers upon request. Foreign residents who have stayed in Korea for three or more months may subscribe to the national health insurance. Foreign residents or overseas Koreans who have not stayed in Korea may subscribe to the national health insurance if there is a clear reason for a stay of more than three months, such as studies or employment.

How to Register

When Your Husband is an Insured Employee
  • If your husband is employed and insured by the National Health Insurance program, you can apply by registering as a dependent* of your husband. Submit the required documents to the National Health Insurance Corporation through your husband.
  • Required documents: A certificate of your qualification as a dependent to your husband, your alien registration card, your husband's resident registration card, and a certified copy of your husband's family register.
    * Dependent : A person who relies on another as a primary source of income.
When a Married Immigrant Woman Is Employed
  • When a married immigrant woman is employed by a company, she is automatically registered for National Health Insurance.
  • Submit the required documents to the National Health Insurance Corporation through your company, along with your alien registration card.
When Both the Husband and the Married Immigrant Woman Are Unemployed
  • Self-employed or day workers that are not employed by a company may apply independently at a local office of the National Health Insurance Corporation.
  • Submit the application form along with your alien registration card at the nearest local office of the National Health Insurance Corporation. Married immigrant women may apply without being accompanied by their husbands.

Benefits

  • Insured people will be provided with medical treatment at hospitals, clinics, and oriental medicine clinics at a moderate price. A small fee will be charged for medical examinations and treatment.
  • Insured people will be provided with medical checkups. The number of checkups provided will differ depending on age. Most insured people have a medical checkup every other year.

Payment of Insurance Premium

Employee Subscribers
  • Payment of Premium: Monthly premiums are deducted from monthly salary, and are remitted by the employers.
Local Subscribers
  • Payment of Premium
    • Premiums are billed every month, and overseas Koreans and foreign residents shall pay the premium of the current month by the 25th of the previous month when three months have passed since the date of entry. (If the subscribers are qualified based on the prior period adjustment method, the premium is added to the initial premium.)
    • Foreign residents with F-1~2 or F-5 status shall pay monthly premiums based on the same premium criteria as those applicable to Korean citizens.
Note : If the status of spouses is verified, regardless of the status of stay, the subscribers may join the household of Korean citizens and pay monthly premiums based on the same premium criteria as those applied to Korean citizens.

Counseling and Inquiries

For detailed information on premiums, qualifications and benefits of the national health insurance, visit the website of the National Health Insurance Corporation or call 1577- 1000 (for English information, call 02-390-2000).

Website ! of the National Health Insurance Corporation : http://www.nhic.or.kr/

* Source : Danuri (The multicultural family support portal site)
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