Japanese government to cut treatment fees in 2016

The government of Japan said this week it plans to cut medical treatment fees by 0.84% in its fiscal 2016 budget as the country tries to trim social spending, which has become a huge problem as Japan's population continues to age and incur high healthcare costs. The country's medical fees are revised every two years and include fees paid to doctors and pharmacists as well as covering prices for drugs. The country will raise medical service fees by 0.49%, which will go to doctors, pharmacists and other medical workers and will cut official drug prices by 1.33%, according to a report by the Japan News. The government plans to cut ¥170 billion ($1.4 billion) from the expected increase in national social security expenditures. The 0.84% cuts in medical fees are expected to save about ¥90 billion, the report said, with another ¥20 billion in cuts to government subsidies planned for the country's Health Insurance Association. Report