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Mandatory Health Insurance for Expats to be Set in South Korea

South Korea is set to implement a mandatory enrolment of the national health insurance programme for expats who are staying in South Korea for a period of at least six months.

The new rules come in to effect on 16 July 2019, with all foreigners and Koreans who have citizenship in another country that have lived in South Korea for at least six months subscribing to the state healthcare programme. Expats must enrol onto the National Health Insurance programme for expatriates. This health insurance programme requires subscribers to pay monthly premiums, and the law change is an attempt to stop foreigners taking advantage of the health care system.

The premiums paid are determined by income and assets, with the average monthly health insurance subscription being £74. An overdue payment for health insurance could cause problems with visa extensions, as well as health insurance benefits. More than 100,000 international students will be affected by the mandatory enrolment, with Universities calling for an exemption for students. In excess of 8,000 British expats currently live and in South Korea, with more than 100,000 Brits travelling to the country each year, according to Government figures.

Thailand to Adopt a Similar Health Insurance Programme for Expats

The news follows Thailand adopting a similar healthcare insurance enrolment scheme for long-term expats, though the Thai insurance requirement is significantly more expensive at almost double the average cost.

Healthcare International offers comprehensive medical insurance for expats, no matter what country they make their home in, or how long their stay might be.