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ACT ON THE SUPPORT FOR ASSISTIVE DEVICES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES, OLDER PERSONS, ETC. AND PROMOTION OF USE THEREOF

Act No. 13662, Dec. 29, 2015

CHAPTER I GENERAL PROVISIONS
 Article 1 (Purpose)
The purpose of this Act is to minimize constraints on the activities of persons with disabilities, older persons, etc., and to contribute to enhancing the quality of their life by providing assistive device services efficiently by prescribing matters concerning supporting assistive devices for persons with disabilities, older persons, etc., and promoting utilization thereof.
 Article 2 (Fundamental Notion)
The fundamental notion of this Act is to achieve social integration through self-realization of, full social participation by, and enhancement of quality of life of persons with disabilities, older persons, etc., by assuring the utilization of assistive devices conveniently and freely according to the needs and requirements thereof.
 Article 3 (Definitions)
The terms used in this Act shall be defined as follows:
1. The term "persons with disabilities, etc." means persons with disabilities under Article 2 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities, older persons, etc. under subparagraph 1 of Article 2 of the Act on Long-Term Care Insurance for Older Persons, and persons, etc. of distinguished service to the State under Article 4 of the Act on the Honorable Treatment of and Support for Persons, etc. of Distinguished Service to the State;
2. The term "assistive devices" means all kinds of machinery, tools, and equipment used to improve and supplement the physical and mental functions of persons with disabilities, etc., and to assist them with convenience in daily activities, which are prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare;
3. The term "assistive device services" means a series of support by which persons with disabilities, etc. have access to and utilize assistive devices efficiently.
 Article 4 (Responsibilities of State and Local Governments)
(1) The State and local governments shall endeavor to promote the utilization, provides services, and manage efficiency of assistive devices for persons with disabilities, etc., to eliminate difficulties when they utilize assistive devices.
(2) The State and local governments shall take relevant measures, such as raising necessary funds, etc., to provide persons with disabilities, etc., with assistive device services and to promote the utilization thereof.
(3) The State and local governments shall endeavor to cultivate specialists necessary for providing assistive device services appropriate for persons with disabilities, etc.
 Article 5 (Formulation, etc. of Master Plans)
(1) The Minister of Health and Welfare shall consult with the heads of related central administrative agencies and formulate a master plan for supporting assistive devices and promoting utilization thereof (hereinafter referred to as "master plan") every five years. Such master plan may be formulated in a comprehensive plan for policies for persons with disabilities under Article 10-2 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
(2) Matters concerning formulating master plans and coordinating important policies therefor shall deliberated on by the Policy Coordination Committee for Persons with Disabilities under Article 11 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
(3) Where necessary for formulating master plans, the Minister of Health and Welfare may request the heads of related central administrative agencies to submit data therefor. In such cases, the heads of agencies in receipt of request shall comply with therewith, except in extenuating circumstances.
(4) The Minister of Health and Welfare shall conduct a fact-finding survey of assistive devices every three years to generate basic data necessary for formulating a policy for assistive devices. In such cases, the fact-finding survey may be conducted together with a fact-finding survey of persons with disabilities under Article 31 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
 Article 6 (Relations with Other Acts)
Except as otherwise expressly provided for by other Acts, this Act shall apply to supporting assistive devices, promoting utilization of assistive devices, and researching and developing assistive devices.
CHAPTER II ASSISTIVE DEVICE SUPPORT, ETC.
 Article 7 (Projects for Assistive Device Support and Promotion of Utilization thereof)
The State and local governments may perform the following projects within budgetary limits:
1. Case management projects, including distributing, renting, and ex post facto managing assistive devices;
2. Providing information on assistive devices;
3. Supporting quality control, research, and development of assistive devices;
4. Other necessary projects determined by the Minister of Health and Welfare, for supporting assistive devices and for promoting utilization thereof.
 Article 8 (Distribution, etc. of Assistive Devices)
(1) Where persons with disabilities, etc., request assistive devices, the State and local governments may provide any of the following support, within budgetary limits:
1. Distributing, renting, ex post facto managing, etc. assistive devices;
2. Paying expenses necessary for subparagraph 1;
(2) Expenses shall be paid only where distributing, renting, or ex post facto managing assistive devices is deemed to be impractical.
(3) The Minister of Health and Welfare may manage cases of assistive device services for persons with disabilities, etc. to adopt suitable assistive devices and increase utilization thereof.
(4) Necessary matters including the scope of persons eligible to make a request under paragraph (1), standards and methods for distributing, renting, and ex post facto managing assistive devices and for paying expenses incurred therein, shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
 Article 9 (Provision of Information on Assistive Devices)
(1) The State may provide necessary information for persons with disabilities, etc. to utilize assistive devices safely and conveniently.
(2) Necessary matters including details of information provided and methods of providing such information pursuant to paragraph (1), shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
 Article 10 (Quality Control, etc. of Assistive Devices)
(1) The State may control the quality of assistive devices for maintaining and improving the quality of assistive devices, to guarantee safety and convenience for persons with disabilities, etc.
(2) The State may determine and publish items subject to quality control, methods of quality control, etc., prescribed in paragraph (1).
(3) To control quality, etc., under paragraph (1), the State may delegate or entrust the quality control to the heads of affiliated institutions prescribed by Presidential Decree or to public institutions prescribed in Article 4 of the Act on the Management of Public Institutions.
 Article 11 (Management of Information on Assistive Devices and Users)
(1) Where the State and local governments provide assistive devices to persons with disabilities, etc., they may collect and manage information including assistive devices and users, by means of computerized systems.
(2) Necessary matters including the scope of information to be collected and managed pursuant to paragraph (1), shall be prescribed by Presidential Decree.
 Article 12 (Obligations of Assistive Device Companies)
(1) Each assistive device company that produces, sells, distributes, rents, imports, or repairs assistive devices, shall handle assistive devices prioritizing the safety and convenience of persons with disabilities, etc.
(2) Where each assistive device company sells, distributes, rents, or repairs assistive devices, it shall provide persons with disabilities, etc., with necessary information, etc. to use such devices.
(3) Assistive device companies shall provide after-sales services, such as repair of assistive devices sold, distributed, and used for the convenience of persons with disabilities, etc.
CHAPTER III ASSISTIVE DEVICE CENTERS
 Article 13 (The Central Assistive Device Center)
(1) For the purposes of supporting assistive devices and promoting utilization thereof, etc., the Minister of Health and Welfare shall establish and operate the central assistive device center (hereinafter referred to as the "main center") to perform the following projects:
1. Researching and developing projects concerning assistive device policies;
2. Educating and training assistive device specialists and publicizing assistive device policies;
3. Collecting and managing information on assistive devices and building and providing a database;
4. Supporting the operation and management of regional assistive device centers;
5. Monitoring the users and actual status of assistive devices in use;
6. International cooperation concerning assistive devices;
7. Other necessary projects determined by the Minister of Health and Welfare, for supporting assistive devices and promoting utilization thereof.
(2) The Minister of Health and Welfare may entrust a public institution under Article 4 of the Act on the Management of Public Institutions, with operating the main center.
(3) Where Minister of Health and Welfare entrusts the operation of the main center to a public institution pursuant to paragraph (2), the State may fully or partially subsidize necessary expenses for establishing and operating the main center, within budgetary limits.
(4) The main center shall employee assistive device specialists, including assistive technology professionals under Article 15. In such cases, it shall endeavor prioritizing employing persons with disabilities registered pursuant to Article 32 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
(5) Other necessary matters for establishing and operating the main center, placing human resources, etc., shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
 Article 14 (Regional Assistive Device Centers)
(1) The Special Metropolitan City Mayor, Metropolitan City Mayors, Special Self-Governing City Mayor, Do Governors, and Special Self-Governing Province Governor (hereinafter referred to as "Mayor/Do Governor") may establish and operate a regional assistive device center (hereinafter referred to as "regional center") to perform the following projects:
1. Case management projects, including consulting, evaluating, applying resource correlation, and ex post facto managing relating to assistive devices;
2. Operating assistive device exhibition and experience halls;
3. Providing information on assistive devices, and educating and publicizing assistive devices;
4. Operating assistive device services-related programs correlating with communities;
5. Projects for short- and long-term renting, repairing, customized modifying, manufacturing, augmenting, and recycling assistive devices;
6. Cooperating concerning distributing assistive devices, etc. under other Acts;
7. Cooperating in the projects performed by the main center;
8. Other projects determined by the Minister of Health and Welfare.
(2) Each Major/Do Governor may establish and operate regional centers at the reasonable scale determined by the Minister of Health and Welfare, based on the number of persons with disabilities, etc. in the competent jurisdiction; and, in such cases, may burden the heads of Sis, Guns, and Gus jointly with part of budget expenditure incurred therein.
(3) Each Major/Do Governor may entrust the operation of a regional center to a public institution or a nonprofit corporation established under Article 4 of the Act on the Management of Public Institutions, as prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
(4) Where operating regional centers is entrusted pursuant to paragraph (3), the Minister of Health and Welfare, Mayors/Do Governors, or heads of Sis, Guns or Gus may fully or partially subsidize necessary expenses, within budgetary limits.
(5) Each regional center shall employ assistive device specialists, including assistive technology professionals under Article 15, etc. In such cases, it shall endeavor prioritizing employing persons with disabilities registered pursuant to Article 32 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
(6) Other necessary matters for establishing and operating regional centers, placing human resources, etc., shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
CHAPTER IV ASSISTIVE DEVICE SPECIALISTS
 Article 15 (Issuing, etc. Assistive Technology Professional Licenses)
(1) The Minister of Health and Welfare shall issue a license to the persons (hereinafter referred to "assistive technology professional") meeting the qualification under paragraph (2), to provide services to persons with disabilities, including providing consulting on assistive devices, educating on using assistive devices, providing information on assistive devices, or manufacturing or repairing assistive devices.
(2) Necessary matters including qualification requirements for assistive technology professionals and types of assistive technology professionals, methods of obtaining licenses of assistive technology professionals under paragraph (1), shall be prescribed by Presidential Decree: Provided, That separate requirements shall be determined for persons with disabilities registered pursuant to Article 32 of the Act on Welfare of Persons with Disabilities.
(3) Where an assistive technology professional's license is lost or damaged, he/she shall be re-issued such license upon request.
(4) No assistive technology professional shall lend his/her license to other persons.
(5) Necessary matters including the procedures for issuing, re-issuing, and managing licenses under paragraphs (1) through (3), shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
<<Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018>>
 Article 16 (Grounds for Disqualification)
None of the following persons shall be qualified for an assistive technology professional:
1. A mental patient under subparagraph 1 of Article 3 of the Mental Health Act: Provided, That this shall exclude any person deemed by a medical specialist suitable for an assistive technology professional;
2. A person addicted to narcotics, cannabis, or psychotropic drugs;
3. A person placed under adult guardianship, limited guardianship, or specific guardianship;
4. A person whose sentence has not been complete since he/she was sentenced to imprisonment without prison labor for violation of this Act, Article 234 or 317 (1) of the Criminal Act, the Medical Service Act, the National Health Insurance Act, the former National Health Insurance Act, the Medical Insurance Act, the Medical Care Assistance Act, the Act on Special Measures for the Control of Public Health Crimes, the Narcotics Act, the Cannabis Control Act, the Psychotropic Drugs Control Act, or the Prevention of Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome Act, or whose sentence has not been determined for exemption.
<<Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018>>
 Article 17 (Refresher Education)
(1) The Minister of Health and Welfare may order assistive technology professionals to receive necessary refresher education for improving their skills.
(2) The affairs of refresher education referred to in paragraph (1) may be entrusted to a public institution or a nonprofit corporation under Article 4 of the Act on the Management of Public Institutions, as prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
(3) Necessary matters including timings and methods for providing refresher education under paragraph (1), shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
[Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018]
 Article 18 (Cancellation of License)
When an assistive technology professional falls under any of the following, the Minister of Health and Welfare shall cancel his/her license:
1. When he/she lends his/her assistive technology professional license to a third person, in violation of Article 15 (4);
2. When he/she falls under any of subparagraphs of Article 16;
3. When he/she performs duties during the period of a disposition to suspend his/her license imposed pursuant to Article 19, or receives a third disposition to suspend the license.
<<Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018>>
 Article 19 (Suspension of License)
Where an assistive technology professional falls under any of the following, the Minister of Health and Welfare may suspend his/her license, as prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare, for up to six months:
1. Where he/she has inflicted injury to the body of an assistive device user intentionally or by gross negligence in the course of performing the duties of an assistive technology professional;
2. Where he/she fails to undergo refresher education under Article 17 at least two consecutive times.
<<Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018>>
 Article 20 (Fees)
Each person who intends to be issued or reissued an assistive technology professional license, shall pay a fee as prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
<<Enforcement Date: Dec. 30, 2018>>
CHAPTER V RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT OF ASSISTIVE DEVICES AND FACILITATION THEREOF
 Article 21 (Cultivation of Assistive Device Companies, Support for Research, etc.)
(1) To promote the utilization of assistive devices, the State and local governments shall take necessary measures for companies manufacturing assistive devices, including paying production incentives, supporting technology, awarding excellency, and encouraging research and development, etc.
(2) Necessary matters including paying production incentives, supporting technology, and awarding and canceling excellency under paragraph (1), shall be prescribed by Ordinance of the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
 Article 22 (Support, etc. for Research and Development of Assistive Devices)
The State and local governments may subsidize expenses for a nonprofit corporation or organization conducting research and development activities of assistive devices and providing assistive device services, within budgetary limits.
CHAPTER VI SUPPLEMENTARY PROVISIONS
 Article 23 (Prohibition against Seizure, etc.)
No assistive devices distributed or provided to persons with disabilities, etc. pursuant to this Act, shall be seized or provided as a collateral.
 Article 24 (Delegation, etc. of Authority)
(1) The Minister of Health and Welfare and Mayors/Do Governors may partially delegate authority under this Act to Mayors/Do Governors, heads of Sis, Guns or Gus, or heads of institutions affiliated with the Ministry of Health and Welfare, as prescribed by Presidential Decree.
(2) The Minister of Health and Welfare and Mayors/Do Governors may entrust duties under this Act to public institutions under Article 4 of the Act on the Management of Public Institutions, or to related corporations or organizations, as prescribed by Presidential Decree.
ADDENDA
Article 1 (Enforcement Date)
This Act shall enter into force one year after the date of its promulgation: Provided, That Chapter 4 (Articles 15 through 20) shall enter into force three years after this Act is promulgated.
Article 2 (Exceptions to Acquisition of Assistive Technology Professional License by Holders of Assistive Technology Professional Licenses Issued by Private Organizations)
Notwithstanding Article 15, the holders of an assistive technology professional license issued by organizations acknowledged by the Minister of Health and Welfare as at the time this Act enters into force, may acquire an assistive technology professional license under this Act if they pass an exceptional examination administered by the Minister of Health and Welfare within three years from the date this Act enters into force.
Article 3 (Transitional Measures concerning Holders of Assistive Technology Professional Licenses Issued by Private Organizations)
Persons who hold assistive technology professional licenses issued by an organization acknowledged by the Minister of Health and Welfare as at the time this Act enters into force, shall be deemed assistive technology professionals under this Act for three years after this Act enters into force.
Article 4 Omitted.