SEOUL, March 5 (Korea Bizwire) – South Korea will gradually phase out the country’s controversial “disability grade” system for handicapped people, the government said Monday.
Currently, the government classifies disabled people into six classes depending on their level of incapacity and medical status. The government’s assessment system determines monthly basic pension, as well as other kinds of support.
The system, however, has received public criticism not only for being degrading and inhumane for disabled people but also on the basis that strictly assessing a person medically often fails to take into account the subtle differences of each person’s disability.
A committee under the Prime Minister’s Office held a meeting earlier in the day and decided to phase out the existing system starting in the second half of 2019.
Under the plan, the government will adopt a new regime that can better measure the incapacity of each individual and will conduct a nationwide review to exactly determine each person’s medical and financial status.
The ministry of Health and Welfare, which administers the benefits, said it will conduct a further survey in 2020 to decide mobility benefits and another review in 2022 to determine earnings and other employment benefits.