Medical checkups, private or public doctor visits, medicines, hospital bills and medical tests can sum up to an overwhelming cost if you are foreigner living in Tokyo, Japan.
You are therefore advised to get covered under the country's health insurance plan to avoid digging into your own pocket or better yet, to avoid overburdening your friends and loved ones.
NOTE 1: Each country has it's own health insurance system. I highly recommend you research about the health insurance plans before visiting the country.
What to expect when visiting hospitals in Tokyo
- Majority of the patients and the health care providers speak Japanese.
- Some private hospitals have a translator.
Health Insurance Plans for Foreigners in Tokyo, Japan
There are 2 health insurance plans in Tokyo:
- Employee Health Insurance
- National Health Insurance
NOTE 2: All persons living in Tokyo, foreigners and citizens, are required by law to enroll in either of the health insurance plan.
Factors that determine your health insurance plan
- If you are or aren't employed by a Japanese employer.
- If the Japanese employer offers this health insurance plan.
Employee Health Insurance Plan
- In this plan, the employer pays half of your premium.
- The rest is deducted from your monthly salary.
- This insurance plan covers only 70 percent of your medical bills and that of your family.
- Your Employee Health Insurance premium is directly proportional to your income.
- To qualify for this health insurance plan, you simply get employed by a Japanese employer.
National Health Insurance
- This health insurance plan only applies if you are under the age of 75.
- If you're unemployed.
- If you're self-employed.
- If you're a contractor.
- If you're a retiree.
- If you're a family member of any of the above mentioned groups.
- This insurance plan only covers 70 percent of your medical bills.
- To apply for this plan, visit the Residential Affairs Division offices in your town or city.
The National Health Insurance premium depends on:
- Your age
- Your income in the previous years.