National Policies on Ageing in South Korea
Korean society began to modernize rapidly from the early 1960s when a five-year economic development plan was launched and a family-planning programme was adopted as a national policy. National policy programmes for elderly Koreans can be categorized into three groups: income maintenance, health care and social services. This chapter presents an account of population ageing and a profile of elderly Koreans. It describes the policy-making context and details current policies for income support, health care and social services for the aged. The chapter provides the discussion of the latest policy developments and prospects, and some lessons from and for other countries. The Korean economy has been export-oriented, and salary systems for workers in most Korean industries have been based more on seniority than individual capability. Three dimensions of the context in which policies for the elderly are developed are considered: attitudes towards the elderly, citizen participation in policy-making and the bureaucratic structure in which policies are developed and administered.