Outlining the Unmet Healthcare Needs of ROK Personnel

Research Paper Title

Annual Disease Experience by Type and Correlations with Unmet Healthcare Needs among ROK Military Personnel.


The National Statistical Yearbook of Defence 2018 issued by the Republic of Korea (ROK) Ministry of National Defence reported that the number of patients using military hospitals steadily increased from 2008 to 2017.

However, in the outpatient clinic statistics for years 2015-2017 from the ROK Armed Forces Medical Command, the amount of medical care received from some medical departments, such as the infection medicine, surgery, and anesthesiology departments, decreased.

Therefore, the purpose of this study was to observe the differences in incidence of military personnel’s unmet healthcare needs according to number of diseases by type.


The study used data from the Military Health Survey, which was conducted from 2014 to 2015 and included 5162 responses from ROK military personnel.

The number of diseases by type and unmet healthcare needs were self-reported.

A multiple logistic regression analysis was used to examine the validity of the annual disease experience by type and correlations with unmet healthcare needs.


Of the 5,162 military personnel, 25.2% experienced unmet healthcare needs, and the more people with the number of disease by type, the more likely they were to experience unmet healthcare needs (1: 13.4%, 2: 22.9%, 3: 29.2%, 4: 34.5%, 5: 41.4%).

The logistic regression analysis also revealed significant differences (1 = REF, 2 odds ratio (OR) = 1.83, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.50-2.24; 3 OR = 2.53, 95% CI: 2.05-3.11, 4 OR = 3.10, 95% CI = 2.49-3.85; ≥5 OR = 3.85, 95% CI = 3.08-4.81).

In addition, subgroup analysis showed that female military personnel are more likely to experience unmet healthcare needs than are male military personnel.

The researchers have also confirmed that working areas and private insurance can affect unmet healthcare needs.


This study suggests that unmet healthcare needs are influenced by the number of disease by the type of ROK military personnel.

It is therefore necessary to strive to reduce the number of military personnel who experience unmet healthcare needs through this data.


Kim, H.J., Oh, S.S.Y., Choi, D.W., Won, S.Y., Kim, H.J., Ko, S.C., Jang, S-I. & Park, E-C. (2020) Annual Disease Experience by Type and Correlations with Unmet Healthcare Needs among ROK Military Personnel. Military Medicine. 185(7-8), pp.e944-e951. doi: 10.1093/milmed/usz458.


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