【Aging, safety net and fiscal crisis in Japan】No.159: Non-profit hospital organizations have been sluggish

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, Labour and Welfare released a January 2019 report on hospital statistics that were current as of November 2018. There were 8,365 total hospitals (i.e., 7,310 general and 1,055 psychiatric). Table 1 shows data from non-profit hospital organizations that operate general hospitals nationwide.

The National Hospital Organization, Japan Organization of Occupational Health and Safety, and Japan Community Health care Organization are independent administrative institutions that are affiliated with the national government. The Japan Organization of Occupational Health and Safety operated on a deficit of JPY 3.7 billion in 2017 despite its JPY 22.1 billion subsidy.

The Japanese Red Cross Society, Saiseikai Imperial Gift Foundation, and Koseiren are private nonprofit hospital organizations that fulfill a safety-net function beyond public hospitals without receiving subsidies. However, these organizations have recently fallen into structural deficits. This is partly because each hospital is merely an organization that carries out the management of a single facility. Thus, no synergistic effects are achieved. In addition, these nonprofit hospitals with different establishments are competing over investments in the same narrow medical area. To overcome this, it is essential for these nonprofit hospitals to integrate their management to cover a wide medical area containing a population of 500,000 to 1,000,000.

Table 1: Financial data from non-profit hospital organizations

Source: Financial statements from the above organizations

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