People in hospital watch President Yoon Suk Yeol making an address to the nation about doctors' walkout in Seoul, April 1. Yonhap

President Yoon Suk Yeol called on doctors Monday to come up with a “unified proposal” on the appropriate increase in medical school admissions, saying the government will be open to talks though it believes a hike of 2,000 is the minimum.Yoon made the remark during an address to the nation amid little sign of a breakthrough in a standoff between the government and the medical community over the admissions quota hike. The address, which lasted 50 minutes and was aired live from the presidential office, came as even people within the ruling bloc raised the need to show flexibility on the 2,000-person increase with only days to go until the April 10 general elections.”The number 2,000 is a minimum increase the government came up with through thorough calculations, and followed sufficient and wide-ranging discussions with the medical community, including doctors’ groups, until the decision was reached,” Yoon said.

“If the medical community wants to argue for reducing the size of the increase, it is only right for them to suggest a unified proposal to the government, with a clear and scientific basis, and not take collective action. If they bring a more reasonable and rational measure, we can discuss it any time,” he said.Some 12,000 junior doctors have walked off the job since Feb. 20 to protest the government’s plan, while medical professors have submitted their resignations en masse to join the collective action.The professors, who work as senior doctors at major hospitals, have vowed to reduce their working hours starting this week to cope with growing fatigue caused by the prolonged walkout by their juniors. Community doctors have said they will take similar action.Yoon said his bigger concern is that even with the 2,000-person increase, it will be another 10 years before the newly trained doctors join the workforce.He stressed that the medical reform plan is meant for the people, by citing incidents of people dying on the streets while looking for an emergency room that will take them, and arguing the aim is to improve essential medical services and rural medical services so that people 스포츠토토존 anywhere in the country can receive proper treatment.

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