Koreans in their 20s and 30s who are unemployed or in school will be eligible for free national medical checkups starting in 2019.
“The government has decided to expand the benefits of a free medical checkup to students and jobless youth to prevent the worsening health index of young adults,” the Ministry of Health and Welfare said Thursday.
The ministry will invest an additional 30 billion to 50 billion won ($26.5 million to $44.2 million) of annual health insurance funds to expand the eligibility.
According to the current national medical health examination system, infants from zero to five years old, adolescents from six to 18 years old, health insurance subscribers and dependents and household members over 40 years of age are eligible for free national medical checkups.
Those in the 19 to 39 year age bracket could only get free medical checkups if they had a job or if they were household heads.
Starting next year, those in their 20s and 30s can check for conditions such as obesity, hypertension, kidney disease, diabetes, and pulmonary tuberculosis once every two years, even when unemployed or in school.
The ministry said it would also include a mental health test in the free medical checkup, to prevent depression among the younger generation.
<© Korea Biomedical Review, All rights reserved.>