K-drama actress Ha Ji Won returns to TV as surgeon in Hospital Ship

South Korean actress Ha Ji Won.
South Korean actress Ha Ji Won. PHOTO: ST FILE

SEOUL (The Korea Herald/Asia News Network) - Actress Ha Ji Won is set to return to the small screen with the new MBC medical drama series Hospital Ship.

She previously played lead roles in hit K-dramas such as 2011's Secret Garden. She made her last drama appearance in The Time We Were Not In Love, which aired in 2015.

"The doctors on this show personally seek out patients who do not have medical benefits. It's a different premise from many other medical dramas," Ha said at a press conference for the show Monday in Seoul.

The setting of the series is a hospital ship that treats patients living on remote island villages where medical facilities are scarce. Young medical school graduates, lacking both resources and experience, struggle to save patients.

Ha plays Song Eun Jae, a serious, career-focused surgeon.

"It's a warm story where the doctors not only heal their patients' illnesses, but also their hearts.

"The show kicks off with so many thrilling stories," she added. "I became curious about the lives of real surgeons and often read essays (written by them)."

Starring alongside Ha are boy band CNBLUE singer-turned-actor Kang Min Hyuk, girl group AOA singer-turned-actor Kwon Mina, Lee Seo Won, Kim In Sik and others.

The 40-part series begins airing this week on MBC in South Korea as a Wednesday, Thursday drama. In Singapore, Oh!K channel (StarHub TV Channel 816, Singtel TV Channel 525 (Mandarin) and 611 (Malay)) will broadcast a special episode on Aug 31 at 6.50pm. This will be followed by the first episode at 7.50pm. Future episodes will air in Singapore within 24 hours of Korea at 7.50pm.