In light of the severe COVID-19 outbreak all over the world, North Korea’s lack of medical resources is a topic of conversation that has resurfaced in online communities.

As a result, a past story of a North Korean defector and the excruciating pain she endured as a result of the lack of resources has come into the light.

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Film: Insane

In a recent episode of Channel A’s Now On My Way to Meet You, Yoon Seul Mi, a North Korean defector, testified to how appalling North Korea’s medical system is.

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She revealed that while she lived in North Korea, she received a surgery where she had her spine amputated without any anesthesia, which shocked viewers all around the nation.

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According to Ms. Yoon, she hurt her spine during labor work and when she got to the hospital, she was told that if she didn’t undergo spinal surgery, her other bones would rot as well.

The hospital she visited is considered a major hospital in Korea, but the environment is said to be extremely inhumane.

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Ms. Yoon explained that she sat in a chair while the medical professional removed her spine with a chisel and hammer without using any anesthetic.

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Aside from the fact that they were running low on anesthetic, the other reason they offered for not using anesthetic was the concern that general anesthesia could put her in the wrong posture.

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When she struggled due to the unbearable pain, 6 nurses ran over to hold her down, and when she was about to lose consciousness, they gave her a camphor injection, which is a stimulant that raises blood pressure and helps with breathing.

Luckily, the surgery was a success, but Ms. Yoon shared that she still can’t forget the pain to this day.

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But what shocked viewers, even more, is the fact that such incidences are common in North Korea.

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Last year, Professor Kim Seok Hyang of Ewha University stated,

North Korea is unable to administer the correct dosage of anesthesia to patients according to their weight.

– Professor Kim Seok Hyang

The professor continued,

In hospitals that lack anesthesia, they administer just enough to put them to sleep. As a result, patients sometimes wake up. That’s the reality of North Korean hospitals.

– Professor Kim Seok Hyang