by Kenji Shimazaki
Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), June 2013
The achievement of universal health coverage has been becoming increasingly important in the development agenda, for it constitutes an important part of social protection, which strengthens the stability of the society by sharing the fruit of the development of a country among its people and reducing risks in their everyday life. Equitable access to health services at affordable costs is being pursued by many countries. How has universal health insurance coverage in Japan been achieved, what are the key factors that made it possible and what are the lessons other countries might find useful? This paper has been written in response to these questions.