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Medical Visa Guide

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What is a VISA?

VISA originally means a type of an endorsement or confirmation. However, according to the national policy, its meaning differs.
VISA is generally considered by countries as an “immigration permit confirmation” which allows foreigners’ entry to other countries. It also means a Consul's “act of recommendation for entry” regarding foreigners’ entry permit applications.
In the Republic of Korea, the latter definition is accepted. That is, we understand it as the “Consul’s act of recommendation for entry regarding a permit for a foreigner’s application for entry”. In this case, a foreigner should possess a VISA as a result of the evaluation made by the Immigration Office examiner. If one does not fulfill the conditions required for entry permit, that is not having a VISA, one may not be allowed to enter the airport.

Types of VISA

Single VISA

  • Entry is allowed once within the expiration date.
  • Expiration date is three months from the date of issue.

Multiple VISA

  • Entry allowed twice within the expiration date.
  • Expiration date
    • Three months from the date of issue for A-1 and A-3 VISA
    • It is valid for the period outlined on the agreement.
    • For VISA issued in consideration of reciprocity and other national benefits, it is valid for the period of time determined by the Minister of Justice.

Medical Tour (C-3-3, G-1, 10) VISA

  • This VISA is exclusive to foreign patients who enter for the purpose of receiving medical treatment in Korean hospitals
  • Issuance
    • This is exclusive to those who wish to be hospitalized in Korean professional medical institutions or in healthcare facilities for the purpose of receiving treatment for diseases or for convalescence and require more than 91 days of treatment.
    •  For patients and patient’s spouse, children, or other immediate family members who attend to patient’s care (one year length of stay, expiration date is one year for multiple VISA)
      • C3 (M): In cases where treatment and tour duration is less than 90 days (simple treatment like cosmetic surgery and other cosmetic treatments)
      • G1(M): one year (long-term medical care and rehabilitation)

Procedure for Issuance of VISA

VISA Application Locations

  • Embassy of the Republic of Korea or by the Consul General of the Republic of Korea
    The Head of the Diplomatic Mission Abroad issues the VISA, commissioned by the Minister of Justice at the Embassy of the Republic of Korea or by the Consulate General of the Republic of Korea. (Article 8, Subsection 2 of the Immigration Control Law, Article 11 of the Implementing Regulations for Immigration Control Law, Article 9 of the Implementing Regulations for Immigration Control Law)
    ※ However, in exceptional cases, application for VISA is allowed through a certification from the Immigration Office prior to VISA issuance by the diplomatic office.

VISA Application Procedure

  • Personal application: foreigner (patient) may personally apply at the diplomatic office
  • Application by proxy: A related organization or a businessman from the related field may apply for a VISA at the online portal of the Immigration Office, through HuNET. The applicant (foreigner/ patient) may present the certification number to the diplomatic office for immediate issuance of VISA.
    ※ HuNET: It is a system designed to allow online VISA application and to check its status and result without visiting the Immigration Office. (www.visa.go.kr)

Required documents for VISA application

  • Passport, VISA application form, other required documents
    ※ In case where VISA is needed, submit VISA issuance certificate
  • In case of medical tour: submit hospital reservation confirmation document, financial documents, copy of business license, copy of registration certificate for related organization, or family relation-supporting document, etc. (In case of personal reference by related organization or business, financial documents may be omitted)
    Required documents by inviter, Required documents by invitee
    Required documents by inviter Required documents by invitee
    • VISA application – one 3x4 colored photo of the invitee
    • Statement of reasons for invitation
    • Copy of business registration certification or Corporate registration
    • Copy of registration of medical institution or related business registration
    • Medical purpose issued by the medical institution
      (medical certificate, reference issued by the medical institution / confirmed treatment and convalescence reservation issued by the domestic medical institution / tour program outline / other supporting documents)
    • Invitation document for foreign patients (for Chinese)

    [Additional documents required if applying through a proxy]

    • Identification card and proof of employment
    • Business document (representative’s name inscribed)
    • Immigration Office job training certificate (submission required since Nov. 1, 2009)
    • Copy of passport
    • Copy of proof of residency and census statement (for Chinese)
    • Document showing cost of treatment and stay

    [Additional documents required for invitation of patient’s family member]

    • Supporting document for family relations

Agency Business

  • ŸVisa-issuing agencies approved by the Ministry of Justice and those registered at the Korean Health Industry Development Institute are those businesses that attract foreign patients.
  • Since Nov. 1, 2009 only employees who have received an Immigration Office Job Training may apply as proxy. In such cases, application is limited and may be requested with supporting documents.

General VISA issuance flow chart

  • In applying for a VISA, foreigner’s qualifications based on their intention should be confirmed. Supporting documents should be submitted to the diplomatic offices.
  • Submission of applicant’s supporting documents → registration → examination → request for approval → evaluation → approval → VISA attachment → Issuance /	Processing period  Diplomatic offices / Approval institution  Minister of Justice
  • The Head of Diplomatic Mission Abroad and the Minister of Justice perform the rights to issue the VISA requests for approval. In cases commissioned to the Head of Diplomatic Mission Abroad, the Republic of Korea VISA and expiration date are attached to the passport based on the authority’s discretion.
    ※ Foreigners with issued VISA should confirm if written details are correct on VISA prior to entry.

Exemptions

  • Foreigners receiving reentry permission or those who are exempted for reentry but who entered before the expiration dates.
  • Citizens who are exempted from acquiring entry VISAs are those under agreement with the Republic of Korea.
  • Foreigners entering the Republic of Korea for international goodwill or tourism and for its benefits are permitted to enter by the President.
  • Foreigners who departed after receiving proof of refugee status and those who entered before the expiration date of their VISAs

Others

Origin of contents and reference site : HiKorea Portal