Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Chonbuk National University Hospital

Esther Mgbemeje
Jeonju, South Korea


 Chonbuk National University Hospital

Located in the capital of North Jeolla province,1 Chonbuk National University Hospital was built in 1909 by the South Korean government. It was established during the last days of the Joseon dynasty, and was the second medical clinic built in the Jeolla province when little medical aid was available for its people. From 1909 to 1988 the hospital went through some strategic renaming which reflected its progress and achievements. In 1909 it was first known as Jeonju Gwanje Jahye Hospital, changed to Jeollabuk-do Jeonju clinic in 1925, and renamed in 1988 as Chonbuk National University Hospital. It is currently the best hospital in the West Coast region with over 2000 staff, 3500 outpatients, 1000 inpatients per day, and 1,102 beds. It has specialized centers for emergencies, cancer, geriatrics, clinical research, pediatrics, and respiratory diseases, each with specially trained personnel. The hospital is famous for its innovative medical research and technology in Korea and South East Asia, and for its high rate of successfully carried out surgeries. In 1999 it completed its first hematopoietic stem cell transplantation center and in 2002 was selected as the designated World Cup hospital. It also opened an Advanced Digital Hospital in 2004, a PET center in 2005, and a Gamma Knife center and Thyroid clinic in 2006. It has earned first rank in the proper use of antibiotics after surgery infections, in hemodialysis evaluation, and in managing brain-dead patients by the organ transplant center. It has successfully performed 500 organ transplant surgeries of the liver, kidney, and cornea. It has started using the advanced ‘da Vinci’ surgical ’Robot to perform minimal invasive and highly precise surgeries, and has  successfully performed over 234 medical surgeries using the da Vinci surgical system, as well as other medical innovative technology research. Since its inception the hospital has focused on giving hope to all patients regardless of their socio-economic status. It offers free medical services and medical support to people living in island areas, disaster zones, multi-cultural households, through their public health and medicine support group for the less privileged. The social welfare program of the hospital has benefited over 21,000 patients in the past ten years. The hospital provides services for early asthma screening, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease screening, education and management of cerebrovascular diseases, Parkinson’s disease, screening and education for senile diseases, language correction for children from multi-cultural households, early detection and management of juvenile diabetes, education for epileptic patients, and financial support for the disabled. It also provides therapy and monthly culture events to help with the emotional stabilization of patients and their families. The hospital conducts research on liver, gallbladder and pancreatic cancer, and has a Clinical Research Center and specialized centers for drug development for lung injuries, for diabetes, a  Cyclotron Institute, the Korea Organ Bank, and the Therapeutic Stem Cell Research center. It also has nationally designated laboratories for airway remodeling control and renal regeneration. It is affiliated with Chonbuk National University, benefitting the school’s medical and nursing students by offering clinical training at the hospital. It also distributes advanced medical technology and treatment to Vietnam, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Nepal, and Kenya. Its motto is to brighten the lives of the sick through sharing and giving  second to none services to help create a world filled with happiness and without disease.



  1. “Jeonju’s Gastronomic Greatness Recognized by UNESCO” Chosun Ilbo. 16 May 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2012.



ESTHER MGBEMEJE is a microbiology graduate from the University of Benin, Nigeria, currently undergoing a master’s degree program in the department of energy engineering at Chonbuk National University. She has great passion for writing and research and has successfully published over 2000 magazines. She also has written short stories and poems.


Spring 2015  |  Sections  |  Hospitals of Note

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