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The quality of health care is generally very good in Japan but further improvement can be made in the management of diabetes, treatment of heart attack (AMI), and cancer control. In Japan, per capita spending on pharmaceuticals is the second highest in the OECD after the United States. Spending on pharmaceuticals could be reduced by increasing the share of the generic market.
This report reviews the quality of health care in Japan, and seeks to highlight best practices, and provides a series of targeted assessments and recommendations for further improvements to quality of care. One of Japan’s foremost policy challenges is to create an economically-active ageing society. Excellent health care will be central to achieving this. A striking feature of the Japanese health system is its openness and flexibility. In general, clinics and hospitals can provide whatever services they consider appropriate, clinicians can credential themselves in any speciality and patients can access any clinician without referral. These arrangements have the advantage of accessibility and responsiveness. Such light-touch governance and abundant flexibility, however, may not best meet the health care needs of a super-ageing society. Japan needs to shift to a more structured health system, separating out more clearly different health care functions (primary care, acute care and long-term care, for example) to ensure that peoples’ needs can be met by the most appropriate service, in a coordinated manner if needed. As this differentiation occurs, the infrastructure to monitor and improve the quality of care must simultaneously deepen and become embedded at every level of governance –institutionally, regionally and nationally.
Base de données Statistiques de l'OCDE sur la santé 2015 - Notes par pays
A dashboard of key government indicators by country, to help you analyse international comparisons of public sector performance.
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Japan has been successful at reducing the mortality due to cardiovascular diseases (CVD) but there is room to reduce the burden of CVD and diabetes even more.
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To achieve greater gender equality in employment and more inclusive growth, Japan needs to change the workplace culture and ensure that the tax and social security systems do not reduce work incentives for second earners in households.
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The Japanese economy has for many years been characterised by a low corporate return on equity. Increasing returns requires better corporate governance that improves investment and the use of corporate resources, including cash holdings.
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Japan has the potential to grow its agricultural sector, including by producing high-value products that reflect the country’s growing reputation for sophisticated, healthy, and high-quality food. To assure the long-term health of Japan’s food and agriculture system, it is critical to increase its capacity to respond to market demands.
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This country note provides information on latest trends in income inequalities as well as key findings from the 2015 OECD report "In it Together: Why less inequality benefits all".