【Aging, safety net and fiscal crisis in Japan】No.60: Number of Patients with Mental Illness and Dementia

In this column series, Yukihiro Matsuyama, Research Director at CIGS introduces the latest information about aging, safety net and fiscal crisis in Japan with data of international comparison.

The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare conducts a patient survey every three years, and the latest results published in February 2018 is the result of the survey conducted in 2014. For hospitals, the data pertains to the day determined by surveyed hospitals among the three days of October 21 (Tuesday) - 23 (Thursday) in 2014. For clinics, the data pertains to any of the days of October 21 (Tuesday), 22 (Wednesday), and 24 (Friday).

"Disorders of psychiatric and behavior" was the most common illness found among 265,500 of the 1,318,800 hospitalized patients. Together with 257,700 outpatients, the number of patients with psychiatric and behavioral disorder is 523,200 (Table 1). These patients are classified into 4 groups. It is evident that patients with mood disorders, including bipolar disorder, are increasing.

Regarding dementia, the number of patients with "vascular and unspecified dementia" included in "disorder of psychiatric and behavior" has not increased. However, the number of patients with Alzheimer's disease included in "diseases of nervous system" increased by more than 10 times from 1996 to 2014.

Table 1 Number of patients with mental illness and neurological disorder


(Source)Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare

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