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Arch Plast Surg > Volume 46(2); 2019 > Article
Kim: Into a global future with our members to serve the people


The low-cost and high-efficiency Korean healthcare system is capable of providing high levels of healthcare services to the people–the consumers of healthcare–at a low cost. However, this can only be maintained through the sacrifices of medical personnel. Moreover, distortions of the healthcare system have caused fierce competition to emerge, leading to the collapse of specialties. The current healthcare environment requires special patience and efforts from the members of the Korean Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons (KSPRS) more than ever in order to solve the urgent problems facing us and to respond to future changes in the healthcare environment. “United we stand, divided we fall!” [1]. Efforts should be made to promote harmony among members, since unity among our members is a source of strength that can overcome external difficulties.
The KSPRS was founded in 1966, and plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic surgery (PRAS) was recognized as a specialty by the Korean government in 1973. The certifying examination for the specialty was first administered in 1975, and the number of full members of the KSPRS is now 2,500 [2,3]. It has been 53 years since the foundation of the KSPRS, meaning that the KSPRS is now embarking on its second half-century. As a society, it has achieved respectable standing by continuously improving institutions and training competent specialists through substantial education initiatives; as such, its achievements have received international recognition in recent years. Although there are many facets to PRAS, Koreans frequently perceive PRAS as a field that handles only double eyelid surgery, augmentation rhinoplasty, facial contouring surgery, breast augmentation surgery, and abdominoplasty, and does not have any distinct subspecialties. For this reason, to develop further, the KSPRS must strengthen its relationship with the public and improve the accuracy of perceptions of PRAS among the Korean population.


In 2011, the KSPRS changed its annual meeting to an international congress, which has been officially named PRS Korea since 2015. English was adopted as the official language of PRS Korea in 2016, after extensive preparations that were required since English is not an official language of Korea. When English-language sessions were introduced to the annual meeting of the KSPRS, many members expressed their discomfort. Nonetheless, the members of the KSPRS are currently adapting to conducting presentations and discussions in English at the annual meeting of the KSPRS, and they recognize that using English as the official language facilitates communication between the KSPRS and foreign societies. PRS Korea 2018 was held at the Grand Intercontinental Parnas Convention in Seoul, Korea on November 9 to 11, 2018 and 130 invited foreign speakers gave presentations (Fig. 1). The future of the KSPRS is bright because the internationalization of PRS Korea is making progress, although it is still in its beginning stages.
At PRS Korea 2018, the KSPRS signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons for cooperation (Fig. 2). In fact, the KSPRS previously signed MOUs with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the Japan Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, and the Taiwan Society of Plastic Surgery, and has expanded its exchanges with those organizations. However, the KSPRS should enhance cooperative relationships and promote common development through personal exchanges and information interchange by signing MOUs with more PRAS societies around the world. The KSPRS should provide more opportunities for the members of foreign PRAS societies to participate in the congresses hosted by the KSPRS such as PRS Korea, and should work towards establishing a system in which plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic (PRA) surgeons from all over the world can cooperate to achieve their common goal of human health and happiness.
The official journal of the KSPRS was published in Korean under the title Journal of the Korean Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons between 1974 and 2011; since 2012, when its title was changed to Archives of Plastic Surgery (Arch Plast Surg, APS), it has been published in English [3]. APS allows researchers from anywhere in the world to submit papers through its English-language online submission system, and it is indexed in prominent databases such as Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), CrossRef, DOAJ, EBSCO, EMBASE, Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Google Scholar, KoMIC, KoreaMed, PubMed, PubMed Central (PMC), and Scopus, making the papers of the journal easy to search [4]. APS is among the most-cited surgical journals currently published in Asian countries. According to the information provided by the Scimago Journal & Country Ranking, its H-index was 20 between 2013 and 2017, and its scientific journal ranking (SJR) was 0.449 (sixth place), 0.717 (second place), 0.722 (second place), 0.747 (first place), and 0.582 (fifth place) in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 100and 2017, respectively [5]. For APS, over 300 reviewers from 40 countries currently screen the papers, and the acceptance rate in 2018 was 43%. APS does not have an official impact factor (IF), since it is not indexed in SCIE. However, according to an investigation into data from Scopus and Web of Science by the editorial committee of APS, its estimated IF is about 1.46 [6,7]. Recently, APS applied to be indexed in SCIE and is now under screening. It is expected to be indexed in SCIE in the near future. Becoming indexed in SCIE will facilitate further quantitative and qualitative improvements, accelerating the growth of APS into a core international journal in the field of PRAS.
The KSPRS has recently been making efforts to internationalize itself as a society. The reason for doing so is that its ultimate goal is to contribute to human health by developing as an organization through active exchanges with foreign PRAS societies and PRA surgeons, as well as working toward the development of PRAS. The KSPRS should go into a global future with our members to serve the people.


No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

Fig. 1.

PRS Korea 2018 in Seoul

Fig. 2.

MOU signing ceremony between KSPRS and CSPS

MOU, memorandum of understanding; KSPRS, Korean Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons; CSPS, Canadian Society of Plastic Surgeons.


1. Chang DW. Plastic Surgeons of Korean Heritage: why it matters to me. Arch Plast Surg 2019;46:1–2.
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2. Kim YB. The history and future of plastic and reconstructive surgery. Arch Plast Surg 2015;42:515–6.
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3. Cho BC. Tradition and future of the Korean society of plastic and reconstructive surgeons. Arch Plast Surg 2016;43:1–2.
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4. Kim YH. The current position of archives of plastic surgery and its future. Arch Plast Surg 2015;42:387–90.
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5. SJR. Scimago Journal & Country Ranking: Archives of Plastic Surgery [Internet]. Oxford, Elsevier B.V.; c2018 [cited 2019 Jan 1]. Available from:

6. Scopus. Lists of APS article quoted in SCI(E) (2017-2018) [Internet]. Oxford, Elsevier B.V.. c2018;[cited 2018 Jul 1]. 101Available from:

7. Clarivate Analytics. Products [Internet]. Boston, MA, Clarivate Analytics; c2018 [cited 2018 Jul 1]. Available from:

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