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Japanse Medical Expense Reaches ¥3.4 Trillion; Growth Slows To Below 2 Percent

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare released medical expenses accounting records for FY2008. The combination of national health insurance expenses and medical fees is ¥3.41 trillion, another record number for six years in a row. According to the ministry, the annual growth of the expense in 2008 slowed down to 1.9 percent, compared to a 3.1 percent increase in FY2007. The slow down in growth is a result of a government medical reimbursement change in 2008 that encouraged generic drug substitution. Medical expenses among seniors over 70 years of age accounted for 43.5 percent or ¥1.48 trillion, an increase of 2.1 percent or ¥310 billion. Medical expense per capita is ¥267,000, increased by 1.9 percent or ¥5,000 compared to 2007. (Click here for more - Japanese language
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