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Medical Emergencies


Medical Emergencies

EMERGENCIES can happen anytime and consequently, a little advanced planning won’t go amiss.
When you move into your home and even when going around with your realtor, check on the location of the nearest hospital with an emergency department. 

EMERGENCY NUMBERS: The emergency telephone number for an ambulance is 119  (no, this is not a typo – some emergency/information numbers here are the opposite of the North American ones) – translators are available in over a dozen languages, including English.  At a pinch, 1330 (Korea Tourism Helpline) may also be able to help (although this is not their mandate). 

119 Multimedia Contact Services now allows one to contact 119 in an emergency through a variety of methods such as video call, text message (SMS/MMS), mobile app and website, which can be especially helpful to people who cannot speak, those with disabilities, the elderly, foreign nationals, etc.
Video call: If you video-call 119, you are connected to your nearest 119 center. You can communicate your situation in more detail via video, which also can share information such as CPR in real time.
Text message (SMS/MMS): Type 119 in the 'To:' box than enter what you want to report in the message section. You can also write your message on a piece of paper, take a photo of it and send the photo to 119. You can attach photos or even videos.
Mobile app: Install the app ‘119’ from the Play (App) Store. Tap the ‘Report’ button in the app and type what you want to report, then your location. The information will be communicated to the 119 center.
Website: Go to http://119.go.kr and type what you want to report. Your information is then communicated to the nearest 119 center.
 
AMBULANCES: Since cars do not always move over for ambulances in Korea, it is often just as quick to drive or take a taxi to your nearest emergency department.  Note that if you call 119 from a landline and cannot communicate, the emergency services will trace your location. This is not the case, however, if you are calling from a cell phone. Alternatively, if you have a security system installed in your home, you can press the panic button and the security company will help you.  
 
POISON CONTROL information can be best obtained from the 121-Hospital Emergency Room on Yongsan Army Base at 7917-5545/6001. This is the best source of English-speaking information about poisoning in Korea. The Seoul Poison Center can be contacted by dialing 129, but you’re not guaranteed to reach an English speaker.
 
K4E Editor: Korea4Expats.com tries to ensure that the information we provide is accurate and complete, so should you notice any errors or omissions in the content above please contact us at info@korea4expats.com.

Last Updated on 2020-09-18


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