Medical Facilities with English-speaking staff
The Japan National Tourism Organization maintains a list of hospitals by location with English/other foreign language-speaking staff.
Australia does not have a reciprocal health care agreement with Japan. Medicare does not cover hospital or medical charges incurred outside Australia.
Travellers without travel insurance are personally liable for covering any medical and associated costs they incur. The Australian Government won't pay for your medical treatment overseas or medical evacuation to Australia or a third country. See our Smartraveller Travel Insurance page for more information, and tips to help you get the right travel insurance for your trip.
Australians who reside in Japan for more than three months are required to register for Japan’s national health insurance. Contact your local city office for further information.
Bringing medicine into Japan
Japan has strict rules governing the importation of medication, and what can be carried into the country by travellers for personal use. Medicines are classified into five categories in Japan (general, narcotic, psychotropic, stimulant medicine or a medical device). Depending on the classification, name and quantity of the medicine, you may be required to apply for permission/certification in order to take that medicine into the country.
Some medicines including the stimulant medicine dexamphetamine (used to treat ADHD) and pseudoephedrine (found in some cold and flu tablets) are banned in Japan and you may be detained if you are found with them. Others such as narcotic medicines (codeine, morphine and oxycodone) require you to apply for a Narcotic Certificate. If you do not have this certificate when entering Japan, the medicine may be confiscated.
For further information, including obtaining application forms, medicine classifications refer to the Bringing Medicine into Japan webpage found on the Embassy of Japan website. You can also enquire directly with the relevant Pharmaceutical Inspector in Japan.
Other Medical Services
- AMDA International Medical Information Center
NPO that introduces hospitals, explains Japan’s health care system, and provides telephone interpreting
- Himawari (Tokyo Metropolitan Medical Institution Information)
Government service that introduces hospitals, explains Japan’s health care system, and provides emergency translation and interpreting services
Lifeline and counselling services
- Japan Healthcare Info (JHI)
Locates English-speaking doctors and can make medical appointments (fees apply)