China’s Greenland Group requested Jeju Province to extend the deadline for the opening of the nation’s first for-profit hospital, but the local government said it would revoke approval for the hospital.
The Jeju provincial administration said in a news conference on Monday that it would hold a public hearing from Tuesday, before nullifying the business license to run a foreign medical institute. The local government notified its decision to Greenland Group on the same day.
|Civic groups demand a full nullification of the license for the for-profit Greenland International Hospital on Jeju Island, at a news conference in front of Cheong Wa Dae, on Monday.|
The island province approved the Greenland International Hospital on Dec. 5 on the condition that the hospital opens within three months under the Medical Service Act.
Greenland filed an administrative suit against Jeju Province for limiting the scope of patients eligible for treatment at the hospital only to foreigners. On Feb. 26, the Chinese group requested the Jeju government to extend the deadline of the hospital opening.
However, the Jeju government said the group did not prepare for the opening hospital even though it had three months, refusing to extend the deadline.
The local government said it would select the presiding officer of the public hearing and start issuing “advance notice of disposition” from Tuesday. Under the Medical Service Act, revoking permission for the establishment of a medical institution requires a public hearing for collecting stakeholders’ opinions and evidence.
Civic groups demanded the government a complete nullification of the license of the hospital and a change in the hospital’s role as a state-run hospital, at a news conference in front of the presidential office of Cheong Wa Dae, on Monday.
“Although Jeju Province said it would take steps to revoke the license, it is not a full nullification yet. The fight is not over,” said Jeon Jin-han, policy director at the Korean Federation Medical Activist Groups for Health Rights. “If the government’s administrative procedures for license canceling become closed-door, we will not sit idle.”
Jeon stressed that for-profit hospitals should be banned entirely on Korean soil.
“We want to prevent the privatization of medical services, beyond the blocking of the opening of Greenland International Hospital. We will keep fighting,” he said.
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