Barriers to health care among the elderly in Japan

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2010 Apr;7(4):1330-41. doi: 10.3390/ijerph7041330. Epub 2010 Mar 26.


Japan is undergoing a set of health care reforms aimed at cutting rising health care costs and increasing the efficiency of health care delivery. This empirical study used a large-scale community survey on 15,302 elderly people 65 years and older (56.0% women) conducted in seven municipalities in 2006, to reveal clear-cut evidence of barriers to necessary care. The reasons for not getting health care is attributed to health care cost for the elderly with lower income, while higher income counterparts reported being busy or having a condition not serious enough to seek care.

Keywords: barriers to health care; cost burden; socioeconomic status (SES).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Health Behavior
  • Health Care Costs*
  • Health Care Reform
  • Health Services Accessibility*
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • National Health Programs
  • Social Class