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The most serious problem is the question of "How will I cope sudden sickness?" Without National Health Insurance, you must pay very high medical fee if you get sick. You have to realize it is inevitable to join The National Health Insurance! This service is also open to foreigners as well as Japanese citizens, but you have no right to receive the service unless you pay for your responsibility.
Joining the Scheme Is Basically from the Date of Arrival in Japan
The date of joining scheme is based on the date of arrival in Japan. If the application is made later, the insurer will be required to pay the past premium for the period from the first day in Japan to the date of the application.
• Members of the scheme basically pay 30% of medical fees. That is to say that 70% of the cost is covered by the scheme. (The following are the cases that the scheme is not applied and you have to pay all the cost; "extra charged private rooms" in hospitals, expensive medicines not listed in the scheme, special treatments such as having a gold tooth put in, baby delivery and abortion, etc.)
• Reimbursement of Medical Payment
Under the following conditions, 70% of the cost will be reimbursed if the claim is approved even after you once paid all medical fees at time of treatment.
1) when you are injured in an accident and received a treatment at a hospital which is not under the National Health Insurance scheme, or when you got sudden sick or injury during a trip and received a treatment without submitting an insurance card
2) attendance expenses for serious illness, which is approved by a doctor
3) under the direction of doctor, when a patient receives massage, acupuncture, moxa cautery or osteopathy
4) expenses for making a corset and a plaster
5) expenses for blood transfusion which is not covered by the insurance
6) transportation expenses from home to a hospital for a person with serious sickness
• Assistance for High Medical Expenses
If an individual's medical costs for treatment at one hospital exceed a certain limit, there is a payment system for high-cost medical care where they can apply for a refund of the amount paid over that certain limit. However, it will be not covered for the fee of doctor's medical advice at regular outpatient treatments or the cost of special private room. For further details, please contact National Health Insurance department at the ward or city office.
• Delivery, Death
With National Health Insurance, a woman can receive assistance of 420,000JPY (Approx. US$ 4,200) for a delivery. Likewise, the same amount will be given if there is a certificate or proof of miscarriage and premature birth if the pregnancy period is beyond four months (85 days)
At time of a member's death, 50,000JPY(Approx. US$ 500) to 70,000JPY(Approx. US$ 700) will be given to a person who held the funeral.
•You apply at the National Health Insurance section of the ward or city office for where you live. You will need your residence card and passport.
• If you live with your family, members of your family can also join the scheme. When you are applying, make sure that all the names of your family are listed on the card.
If you move, you must go to the city office of the new residential area to apply for a new insurance card re-issued. If this procedure is not made, National Health Insurance will not be effective.