Friday, 20 March 2009

Japan's National Insurance System


All Japanese and registered foreign people accept equal public health insurance in Japan. But it is not free. You have to pay an insurance fee every month, in accordance with your income. The minimum fee is 13,800 yen.

When you go to the hospital or clinic, the Japanese National Insurance System requires co-payment; patients pay 30 percent of the fee.
If you work at a company, the premiums for an insured employee amount to 13.5% of the employee's income. One half is paid by the employee and one half by the employer.
Sometimes it is difficult for senior citizens and people with a low income to pay their premiums.

Private Doctors are very expensive and you can't use any type of medical insurance for Private Doctors in Japan. But they supply the newest cures or experimental ways. They also can use unauthorized medicines. Rich people go to their private doctors and choose many cures and medicines, whichever they want.
I think the Japanese National Insurance System premium is expensive. Ten years ago, people paid only 10 percent of the fee. The main reason for the raise in premium is that many old people go to the hospital or clinic almost every day. They do this to communicate with other old people. It's like a cafe. Most of them aren't sick. They enjoy seeing their doctor and other patients.

Now the Japanese government has restricted access to the hospital, especially for old people. I hope it works. When young people go to the hospital or clinic, they can wait for two or three hours, because many old people go there early in the morning even though the door is closed. When the door opens, they rush to place their name on the waiting list. This drives many young people mad.

Anyway, the National Insurance system is good. When I feel sick, I don't have to pay the full amount. But it's very important and necessary to be operated on in a fair manner.

Kanae