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South Korea – Maternity and Giving Birth

South Korea is a country located in East Asia with a population of approximately 51 million people. The healthcare system in South Korea provides a range of options for women giving birth, including hospital births and birthing centers. This article will explore the most common options for giving birth in South Korea, how to register a birth, and the attitudes and legislation surrounding abortion in the country.

Giving Birth in South Korea

Hospital Births

The majority of births in South Korea take place in hospitals, with women receiving care from a team of midwives, nurses, and doctors. In a hospital setting, women have access to pain management options, such as epidurals, and medical interventions if necessary.

South Korean hospitals are well-equipped with modern facilities and equipment, and women who give birth in a hospital are supported by a team of midwives, nurses, and doctors. Most hospitals in South Korea have private birthing rooms, which are designed to create a more comfortable atmosphere for the birth.

Birthing Centers

Birthing centers are becoming an increasingly popular option for women in South Korea. These centers offer a more homely and relaxed atmosphere for the birth and are often staffed by midwives and doulas.


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Birthing centers provide women with access to pain management options, such as water birth and hypnobirthing. They also provide a more personalized approach to care, with midwives providing support throughout the pregnancy and birth.

Registering a Birth in South Korea

In South Korea, births must be registered within 14 days of the baby being born. This can be done at any local district office, and both parents must be present. If one of the parents is unable to be present, they can provide a notarized authorization for the other parent to register the birth.

To register a birth, the following documents are required:

  • The birth certificate issued by the hospital, midwife, or doctor
  • Identification documents for both parents
  • The marriage certificate, if applicable

After the birth has been registered, the district office will issue a family register, which is a legal document that serves as proof of the child’s identity and nationality.

Attitudes to and Legislation Surrounding Abortion in South Korea

Abortion in South Korea is legal in cases of rape, incest, and when the pregnancy poses a threat to the woman’s life or health. However, women who seek an abortion must receive counseling before the procedure can be performed.

The attitudes towards abortion in South Korea are mixed, with a significant proportion of the population in support of the practice. However, there are still social stigmas associated with abortion, and women who seek an abortion may face judgment and criticism from their communities.

Despite these challenges, there are organizations in South Korea that provide counseling, education, and referrals to women who need abortion care. These organizations work to support women in their reproductive choices and to challenge the social stigma associated with abortion.

In conclusion, women in South Korea have access to a range of options for giving birth, including hospital births and birthing centers. The healthcare system in South Korea is well-equipped and staffed by trained professionals, and women have access to a variety of pain management options and medical interventions if necessary.

Registering a birth in South Korea is a relatively straightforward process, with parents required to provide the necessary documents and register the birth within 14 days of the baby being born.

Abortion in South Korea is legal in certain circumstances, and the attitudes towards the practice are mixed. Nonetheless, organizations in South Korea provide counseling and support to women who need abortion care and work to challenge the social stigma associated with the practice.

Overall, South Korea provides a supportive environment for women giving birth, with a range of options available to suit individual needs and preferences.

However, like many countries, there is still work to be done to ensure that women have access to the information and support they need to make informed decisions about their reproductive health.


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