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Aging Issues in the United States and Japan$
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Seiritsu Ogura, Toshiaki Tachibanaki, and David A. Wise

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780226620817

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226620831.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 30 November 2021

The Effects of Demographic Change on Health and Medical Expenditures

The Effects of Demographic Change on Health and Medical Expenditures

A Simulation Analysis

(p.223) 7 The Effects of Demographic Change on Health and Medical Expenditures
Aging Issues in the United States and Japan

Satoshi Nakanishi

Noriyoshi Nakayama

University of Chicago Press

This chapter analyzes the impact of the aging Japanese population on the health sector and on the economy as a whole. It focuses on (a) the effect of population aging on future medical care costs; (b) the effect of cost containment strategies on medical care expenditures; and (c) the extent to which licensing systems can or should be used to control the flow of new entrants into the medical profession. A simulation shows that maintaining the present system of payment for health care as the population ages will result in medical care expenditures growing at an average annual rate of 4.3 percent between 1991 and 2040. The share of medical expenditure in GDP will reach 10.8 percent in 2015, before gradually starting to decline. Moreover, even though people invest in their futures rather than their present medical care, their health status in the twenty-first century will be lower because of population aging. Controlling medical expenditures through cost containment will require the Japanese people to accept both major increases in the rate of self-payment for medical care and a decline in national health status.

Keywords:   aging population, Japanese, health care costs, medical care costs, licensing systems, self-payment, health status

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