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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 January 22 - 28  > JCP criticizes Tokyo gov’t budget draft for promoting conversion of public hospitals into for-profit bodies
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2020 January 22 - 28 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

JCP criticizes Tokyo gov’t budget draft for promoting conversion of public hospitals into for-profit bodies

January 25, 2020

The Tokyo Metropolitan government on January 24 published its budget draft for FY2020 which focuses more on the conversion of public hospitals, including Tokyo-run hospitals, into for-profit bodies, the promotion of casino development, and large-scale road construction rather than improvement of social welfare services for Tokyo citizens.

In the proposed 15.45 trillion-yen budget, which is larger than the government budget of Sweden, the Tokyo government allocated 600 million yen for measures to turn public hospitals, including metropolitan hospitals, into for-profit incorporated administrative institutions. In addition, the government earmarked 10 million yen of tax money for the preparation of the introduction of casino-centric integrated resorts, 450 billion yen to cover additional costs to host the 2020 Summer Games, and 56.1 billion yen for large-scale road construction projects, such as a project to extend the Tokyo Outer Ring Expressway.

Meanwhile, the metropolitan government in the 2020 budget plan drastically slashed budgets for the construction of nursing-care facilities and public housing units and for measures to lower the heavy burdens of the national health insurance tax.

Japanese Communist Party Metropolitan Assembly Member Izumi Naomi, the secretary general of the JCP assemblypersons’ group, issued a statement pointing out that it is unacceptable for the Tokyo government to allocate 600 million yen to the 2020 budget draft to promote the transformation of public hospitals to for-profit establishments.

Izumi pointed out that many public hospitals across Japan had been converted into incorporated administrative institutions under the name of boosting operational efficiency and profitability, which has caused the closure of hospitals and associated problems in local communities. Izumi demanded that the Tokyo government use taxpayers’ money to improve financial support for metropolitan hospitals so that they can continue to play a role in providing public medical services to the residents irrespective of profitability.

Izumi also said that the Tokyo government cold-heartedly cut the budgets for the construction of nursing-care facilities and for measures to ease the burdens of high national health insurance premiums.

Izumi said that the 18-member JCP group will work hard to push the metropolitan government to revise the initial budget draft and utilize its financial strength to meet Tokyo citizens’ demand for better living conditions and social services.

Past related articles:
> Tokyo JCP urges governor to retract policy of cutting off funds for metropolitan hospitals [December 12, 2019]
> Tokyo metropolitan gov’t works to invite casino as if it were prearranged policy [August 15, 2019]
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