Network set up for free infant medical care

Democratic organizations working on health care issues launched a national network on May 31 to call on the government to establish a system for free infant medical care.

One of the network advocates, Samejima Chiaki of the Japanese Medical and Dental Practitioners for Improvement of Medical Care (Hodan-ren), said, "Because children's conditions change so much, early treatment is needed without worry about expenses."

Currently, all local governments subsidize medical care for pre-school children, but services vary from municipality to municipality.

The Japanese Communist Party, the Niin Club, and the Democratic Party of Japan found that the network concept is a suprapartisan subject, and showed their support for the network.

Writer Shiina Makoto, actor Nishida Toshiyuki, journalist Masuda Reiko, film director Yamada Yoji, and five other celebrity advocates are calling for more people to join the network.

The JCP Dietmembers on May 30 also inaugurated a project team to legalize free infant medical care.

The team's head Inoue Miyo, Upper House member, at the team's first meeting expressed determination to do her best in and outside the Diet and said, "I want to work together with many citizens' movements." (end)