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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 January 20 - 26  > JCP Koike demands that earning losses in all community healthcare facilities be covered
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2021 January 20 - 26 [POLITICS]

JCP Koike demands that earning losses in all community healthcare facilities be covered

January 23, 2021

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on January 22 took the rostrum at the House of Councilors plenary session on behalf of the party to press the government to provide support for all community healthcare facilities including medical institutions and nursing-care/welfare service providers so that they can "be compensated for their losses of earnings".

Koike quoted Nakagawa Toshio, president of the Japan Medical Association, who said that role-assignments are being arranged right now among all hospitals in order to appropriately deal with COVID patients and accordingly "to support overall community healthcare services".

Koike cited examples such as of private-practice doctors conducting fever examinations, hospitals not designated for COVID-19 accepting patients with pneumonia and fever, and local hospitals and nursing-care service providers responding to COVID-19 positive people who have nowhere to go to be admitted. He said, "All these facilities are struggling to cooperate with each other in order to maintain the community healthcare system."

Koike demanded that the government review its present policy of limiting the provision of subsidies only to COVID-designated medical institutions and said, "The government should make up for losses of earnings of all community healthcare establishments in the quickest and simplest possible way."

In response, Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide, while admitting that private clinics and local hospitals support community healthcare said, "Emergency comprehensive support grants should be provided mainly to hospitals accepting COVID patients."

Koike pointed out that the government has so far provided only one third of a total 3.2 trillion-yen subsidy budget to medical institutions.

PM Suga admitted that only about 1.1 trillion yen of the 3.2 trillion yen was used by the end of 2020, and added, "However, we extend interest-free crisis management loans without collateral."

Koike emphasized the need to recompile the third supplementary budget draft which was drawn up before the state of emergency to one supporting and paying compensation to medical institutions.

PM Suga, however, rejected the recompilation, insisting that the third supplementary budget draft can sufficiently cope with the COVID pandemic.

After the Diet interpellation, Koike held a press conference and criticized PM Suga for "not comprehending reality at all".
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