Priority setting in health care as portrayed in South Korean and Israeli newspapers

Roni Factor, Minah Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Studies have reported differences in the public's understanding of, trust in, and satisfaction with its priority-setting processes and outcomes across countries. How the media frames and reports decision making processes and outcomes may both reflect and affect the public's knowledge of and attitudes toward them. Nevertheless, no studies have analyzed how priority-setting decision making processes are portrayed in the media. We analyzed 202 newspaper articles published over a decade, from January 2000 through December 2009, in leading newspapers of Israel and South Korea. The findings reveal intriguing differences between the countries in both the number and content of the reports. The issue of priority setting is much less salient in Korean than in Israeli society. While the complexity of the task was the most prevalent theme in the Israeli reports sampled, benefits package expansion decisions were most common in the Korean reports. Similarly, the Israeli reports emphasized the qualifications and backgrounds of individual members of the decision making committee, but the equivalent Korean committee was not portrayed as a major actor, and so received less attention. The least reported theme in both countries was priority-setting procedures and principles. These findings, along with results from previous studies which indicate that public satisfaction with the two systems differs between the countries, provoke several interesting future research questions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)226-235
Number of pages10
JournalHealth Policy
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Feb 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea Grant funded by the Korean Government (NRF-2012S1A3A2033416) to Minah Kang.


  • Basket of services
  • Content analysis
  • Health care allocation governance
  • Newspaper reports
  • Priority setting


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