There are lots of hospitals and clinics in the DPRK, and universal free medical service is in force in the country. This system has been enforced since Juche 42 (1953) when the Fatherland Liberation War was at its height, and later developed into a completely free medical service. Diagnosis, doctor’s visit, outpatient and inpatient treatment, surgery, medicine, and even meals in hospital are offered free to patients at the State’s expense.
Preventive medicine system and district medical care system constitute the mainstay of the country’s socialist public health system. Preventive medical care with a regular system of sanitary and anti-epidemic measures ranging from the capital city to provinces is aimed at protecting the working people from all kinds of diseases by means of vaccination and regular medical check-up.
District medical care system is an advanced medical service system in which doctors visit patients. Each doctor is in charge of his district and he regularly looks round his district to conduct hygienic information work, improve sanitation, give consultation and provide medical check-up, thus contributing to preventive treatment.
Numerous specialized hospitals and health research institutes are distributed across the country, like the Pyongyang Medical College Hospital of Kim Il Sung University, Academy of Koryo Medicine, Kim Man Yu Hospital, Pyongyang Maternity Hospital and Breast Tumour Institute of the Pyongyang Maternity Hospital, and ophthalmic, orthopaedic, dental and other specialized hospitals. The Okryu Children’s Hospital, Ryugyong General Ophthalmic Hospital and Ryugyong Dental Hospital have been built recently in the Munsu area, turning it into a hospital village.
In different parts of the country there are many pharmaceutical factories. Among them are the Jongsong General Pharmaceutical Factory, whose production lines from drug research to development and testing have reached the GMP standard, Pyongyang Pharmaceutical Factory and Kanggye Koryo Medicine Factory.
The Pyongyang Dental Hygiene Goods Factory, which produces tens of millions of tubes of toothpaste, gargling solutions and various appliances for dental hygiene, and other bases that produce appliances for hygiene have been increased in number. Sanatoriums built in places rich in mineral water and spa, promote the improvement of the physical fitness of the working people.
The average life expectancy of Korean people has nearly doubled compared to 38 years of preliberation days, and the number of centenarians grows year after year.