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Misaeng [Incomplete Life], Webtoon, Last accessed October 4, Shop Textbooks. Read an excerpt of this book! Add to Wishlist. USD Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Temporarily Out of Stock Online Please check back later for updated availability. Overview Corporatism and Korean Capitalism employs corporatist theory to examine the Korean experience of state-business ties. In , the imposition of the highly repressive Yushin Constitution diminished the legitimacy of the Park regime — , and a social movement composed of intellectuals and workers challenged the authoritarian developmental state.
However, the working class and other social forces were not well organized.
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In , the Park regime implemented a corporatist SHI system for companies with more than employees. Each insurance society operated on the principle of self-supporting accounting systems. To finance each insurance society, employers and employees made equal contributions, and the government bore only administrative costs.
The authoritarian Park regime decided to introduce public health insurance, for several reasons.
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First, the Park regime wanted to gain political legitimacy in the aftermath of the military coup, especially following the Yushin Constitution. Second, the state elites wanted to promote the development of the heavy chemical industry by implementing a decentralized SHI system that was limited to workers in large companies. The authoritarian state overpowered all social forces, including capitalists, laborers, farmers, and doctors. In the s, the Park regime exercised a high degree of state autonomy and supreme state power [ 19 ].
Nevertheless, by , the regime finally implemented severely limited SHI, which covered only 8. Consequently, the reform was not progressive and benefited only those who had relatively little need of social protection, such as workers in economically productive sectors, including conglomerates. This occurred because welfare policy initiatives in Korea were part of the economic growth and industrial development imperatives of the developmental state [ 20 ]. Health care facilities relied heavily on private provision. The Park regime had no intention of using public financing to expand public health care facilities at the expense of investment in economic growth.
As a result, the percentage of public hospital beds decreased from The state thus had only a weak infrastructural power with which to implement health care policies. The historically formed infrastructural power provided institutional legacies that have influenced the forms of state intervention in Korea [ 21 ].
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By the late s, Korean economic growth had begun to slow. Meanwhile, as industrialization had been increasing the size of the working class since the s, the number of employees joining unions had also steadily increased. The Korean government strongly suppressed the labor movement in the early s, but the working class continually resisted and grew stronger through political struggle [ 23 ].
In addition to the labor movement, civic groups, including intellectuals, students, and democratic leaders, mobilized their power resources and led public calls for a constitutional amendment allowing for direct presidential elections; they also favored the dissolution of the military government, which became their slogan in the spring of [ 24 ]. In December , direct presidential elections were held. In , a highly mobilized social movement forced a democratic breakthrough in Korea [ 25 ].
In these political circumstances, Roh decided to expand the number of health insurers to include self-employed workers in rural and urban areas. In January , rural self-employed insurers were created, covering about 6. In , the Roh government created an additional urban self-employed insurers, covering approximately These expansions provided health insurance coverage to all Koreans, meaning that universal health coverage had been accomplished in Korea within only 12 years, from to The growth of the working class, civil society, and social inequality were only some of the factors that induced the incumbent regime to move to universal coverage in Korea.
Nevertheless, the state led policy decision-making because of its relatively strong autonomy and power. However, the incumbent regime did not expand public health care facilities. As a result, the share of public beds decreased drastically from The weak infrastructural power of the state affected the maintenance of the corporatist SHI multiple insurer , even under the universal coverage system, because the government opposed the NHI single insurer type of system, fearing that it would create an excessive financial and political burden [ 26 ].
The Korean SHI system maintained a large number of decentralized health insurers, numbering by the early s. The high level of out-of-pocket payments made the scheme inherently regressive, which was worsened by the narrow benefit coverage. The structural decentralization undermined the principle of social solidarity and exacerbated the financial disparities between insurers [ 3 ]. Meanwhile, major changes in labor and social movements followed the Korean democracy movement of As a result, the working class, farmers, and fishermen centered their activism on social movements [ 27 ].
Amid this change among social forces, a national-scale social movement attempted to transform the corporatist SHI into an NHI system. In June , the integration reform movement formed a grassroots National Committee for Health Insurance Integration, comprising 48 social movement groups.
In the s, neoliberal globalization arrived, along with decreased government finance and reduced welfare. The government policy that most clearly reflected this globalization was the financial liberation policy of Korean economic policy as a whole was also influenced by globalization [ 28 ].
Later, in , the effects of globalization struck the Korean economy during the foreign exchange crisis. One factor in the push for NHI involved changes in the social movement after democratization.
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