The Korean National Health Insurance (NHI) system was an unprecedented accomplishment that was achieved in a short period of time. In this study, we sought to identify gaps between physicians and the public with respect to attitudes toward the NHI system in Korea. The study population was derived from the 2008 Korean Medical Association Survey, which was conducted to investigate satisfaction with and perceptions of the NHI system among physicians (n=961) and the public (n=935). Only 6.5% of the physicians were satisfied with NHI system, and 71.5% were dissatisfied with it. In contrast, 28.3% of the public were satisfied with the NHI system, and 21.4% were dissatisfied. The level of dissatisfaction expressed by physicians (2.03 ± 0.91 on a five-point scale) was also higher than that expressed by the public (3.06 ± 0.84). Despite rapid growth of NHI system, a large gap in satisfaction exists between physicians and the public.
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