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Palliative care in South Korea 

Palliative care in South Korea
Palliative care in South Korea

Hyun Sook Kim

and Boon Han Kim

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date: 04 December 2021

Most Koreans would prefer to withdraw from medically futile life-sustaining treatment, but many Koreans still receive futile treatment even after their conditions are diagnosed as terminal. Korean law does not allow doctors to remove life-sustaining treatment, regardless of the patient‘s condition or desires or those of family members. The limited hospice palliative care that is offered often demands a high degree of family responsibility; the caregivers of terminal patients are usually immediate family members or private caregivers hired by the family. For these reasons, Korean family members of terminally ill patients experience heavy physical, emotional, and social stresses, much more so than families in the West.

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