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Home > English Home > Living in Miyazaki >When you see a doctor in Japan (September .2007)

 When you see a doctor in Japan(September,2007)

You may hesitate to see a doctor when in a foreign country, given the differences in language and institutional practices. This time, we will provide some information regarding medical institutions in Japan.


●Making an appointment

Some clinics require an appointment. Call to find out the office 

   hours in advance. Where an appointment is not required,

   patients are treated on a first come, first served basis; thus, you

   should be prepared for a possibly long wait.

Each clinic has varying office hours, and most of them are closed on Sundays and public holidays.

  In the case of an emergency occurring outside of service hours,

       call the nearest Nighttime Emergency Center or on-call doctor;

       phone numbers are listed in “The Himuka Emergency Network

       and newspapers. “The Himuka Emergency Network” (ひむか救急

     ネット), which you can access from the link on our website,

       provides information about emergency center locations and  

        medical institutions which have foreign language speaking staff.


●What to take with you

Hand your Public Health Insurance Card to the receptionist. Insurance    

 holders pay only 30% of the treatment costs. Those  without

insurance must pay the amount in full. Certain reatments are not

covered by insurance, so make sure to ask the doctor for more 


You must pay all fees in cash at the reception desk after receiving 

    medical treatment.

If you have been taking any medications prior to your visit, bring them with you.


●Medical departments in Japanese  

Japanese clinics are categorized according to their field of  


Familiarizing yourself with the Japanese names for these departments will be useful. At some larger hospitals, each department has varying dates of operation, so please inquire about business hours beforehand.

・内科 Naika ( Internal Medicine)   ・小児科Syounika ( Pediatric)

・整形外科Seikeigeka ( Orthopedics)  

・眼科Ganka ( Ophthalmology )

・産婦人科Sanfujinka ( Obstetrics and Gynecology)

・外科Geka ( Surgery)                       

・皮膚科Hifuka (Dermatology )          

 ・歯科Shika (Dentistry)   

・耳鼻咽喉科Jibiinkouka ( Ear, Nose, and Throat)


●When you are injured or become seriously ill

 Call an ambulance by dialing 119. You can call from public or cellular

 phones for free. 


It is better to have a family doctor in your area in case of emergency.  If you find it hard to explain your symptoms in Japanese, ask a friend to interpret, if possible.  Also, we provide English, Chinese, and Korean versions of the “Medical handbook” here at the Miyazaki International Plaza, which helps with explaining your symptoms to the doctor – you can also download it from our website. 


As always, if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please contact

 the Miyazaki Prefecture International Foundation at (phone) 0985-32-8457,

 (fax) 0985-32-8512, or (email)  Thank you.

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