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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 June 7 - 13  > Min-iren celebrates 70th founding anniv.
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2023 June 7 - 13 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Min-iren celebrates 70th founding anniv.

June 7, 2023

Akahata 'current' column

The Japan Federation of Democratic Medical Institutions (Min-iren) on June 7 celebrated the 70th anniversary of its founding.

At its inaugural meeting, the first chairperson of Min-iren said, "We shall examine patients' affected areas, paying attention to their entire life history. We shall join hands with people fighting for a better life. We shall treat patients, work to keep them healthy, and build a society so that their health can be protected." Min-iren activities started with this declaration.

"Equality in life" is what Min-iren inherited from prewar/wartime proletarian clinics. Min-iren since its founding has been taking on social responsibility in healthcare with respect for fundamental human rights. It has been working "for peace, not war" and fighting against things that undermine people's livelihoods and well-being.

Min-iren started its activities with 117 hospitals and clinics 70 years ago. The number of member medical institutions now tops 1,700. Doctors, nurses, other medical professionals, and staff at Min-iren facilities have been working to promote community health and nursing care.

Young staff working at Kyoto Min-iren Asukai Hospital, for example, open a "Constitution Café" every week. They talk about the Kishida government which is running counter to the spirit of the Constitution by cutting down on state spending related to people's daily lives, including medical care, for the sake of the planned major arms buildup. Through their café, they are attracting café customers to be defenders of the Constitution.

The COVID-19 pandemic in the last few years has brought the vulnerability of Japan's medical care system and social security to light. Under a situation where overall welfare programs are moving backwards, medical organizations affiliated with Min-iren have renewed their resolve and solidarity to pursue "equality in life".

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