National Health Insurance

Anyone staying in Japan for 3 months or more is obligated to enroll in the National Health Insurance Program. When visiting medical institutions, you will be exempt from 70% of medical and pharmaceutical fees by showing your National Health Insurance card.

1. Applying for National Health Insurance

Apply/Inquiry: National Health Insurance Division at the municipal office (after completing resident registration)

Ineligible Cases for Insurance Benefits

Medical examinations and treatments where insurance does not apply, bed fee difference, meal fee borne by patient while hospitalized, cost of materials, etc. Health checks Immunization

Cosmetic surgery Orthodontics Normal childbirth or abortion for economic reasons (abnormalities during delivery shall be covered by insured medical treatment.) Injuries Sustained during work (Such cases are covered by worker's compensation insurance)

2. Cases of High Monthly Medical Care

If hospitalized for a long period and the expenses borne by the insured for medical expenses for a month or more (the 1st to the last day of the month), costs (except for hospital bed fees, meal fees, medical expenses for health insurance outside of the treatments) that exceed the fixed amount will, in principle, be refunded after filing a claim.

Filing method/period:    After 3 months of receiving treatment, a notice for file ("Notice of Determination for High Medical Care") will be sent directly to your address from the National Health Division at your municipal office. Follow the instructions to complete the process.


Inquiry: The National Health Insurance Division at the municipal office you completed resident registration at.

3. Cases Where Covering the Full Amount is Difficult

If you have difficulty paying all personally-borne expenses (30% of medical expenses and prescription drug expenses) because they are too high, there is an "entrusted payment" system in which you only have to pay up to a certain ceiling for personally-borne expenses after receiving prior consent from a medical institution. Designated procedures are required at the National Health Insurance Division at the municipal office where you completed resident registration.

4. Other Benefits from Enrolling in National Health Insurance

1) National Health Insured Childbirth: For each perinatal birth, about 420,000 yen will be paid as a lump sum payment for birth.

2) National Health Insured Death: Financial aid is provided for burial expenses.

5. Extension of Expiry Date

Your new NHI card will be sent to your address one month before the expiration date.