Medical Institutions in Japan

Basic Information

Japan has both large-scale hospitals equipped for hospitalization and operations and small-scale clinics that provide out-patient diagnosis and treatment. You should choose the type of medical institution according to the severity of your illness or injury. Large hospitals, such as general hospitals, are best if you need to undergo a number of different tests or have a serious injury or illness, but outpatient hours are usually limited to the morning and the initial fees are higher unless you have a referral from a doctor.

💻Iryo Net Sanuki (Search Network for Hospitals/Pharmacies with Foreign-Language-Speaking Staff)

You can search for hospitals and pharmacies with staff that speak other languages (English, Chinese, Korean, Tagalog, Portuguese, and Spanish) through Iryo Net Sanuki, an online service run by the Medical Affairs and National Health Insurance Division of Kagawa prefectural office. The information on the site is provided in either Japanese or English. Please check the links below.

Hospitals with foreign-language-speaking staff (English site)

Pharmacies with foreign-language-speaking staff (English site)

From Diagnosis to Paying the Bill

When you arrive at the hospital or clinic, present your health insurance card at the reception desk. Without it, you will be charged the full amount, so please remember to bring it.
The receptionist will give you a questionnaire to fill out with questions about the injury or illness, any allergies you may have, etc. If you do not understand Japanese, ask for help at the reception desk. Patients are called by name when it is their turn to see the doctor. The doctor may perform treatment at that time, or prescribe medicine and/or tests. When your treatment and tests are finished, you will wait in the waiting room until it is your turn to pay. Most hospitals and clinics require cash payment so take cash with you when you go.

💻Multilingual Medical Questionnaires

International Community Hearty Konandai and the Kanagawa International Foundation provide free online Japanese medical questionnaires with translations in different languages. Questions cover such things as your current physical and mental condition, allergies, etc. You can use the questionnaires to explain an injury or illness to doctors in different medical fields by filling out the appropriate form and giving it to the doctor. You can search for the questionnaire you need by language and by medical department. Click on the icon with the language you wish to read.

Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, English, Thai, Khmer, Nepalese, German, Russian, Persian, Arabic, Tagalog, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Laotian, French, Croatian, Tamil, Sinhala, Ukrainian, Myanmar, Mongolian.

Multilingual Medical Questionnaires

💻Multilingual Medical Forms and Explanations

The Ministry of Labour, Health and Welfare provides multilingual translations of various medical forms and explanations such as referral forms, registration forms, medical questionnaires, and explanations of different treatments, operations and tests. The site is in Japanese, but it can used by hospitals and medical staff to access forms and materials for foreign patients.

Forms and materials are available in English, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, and Ukrainian.

Multilingual Medical Forms and Explanations


At some hospitals and clinics, you pay for and receive the medicine prescribed by the doctor when you pay for the consultation. In most cases, however, you will receive a prescription when you pay your bill. You should take this to a prescription pharmacy outside the hospital. If you are visiting the pharmacy for the first time, show your health insurance card and fill out the questionnaire which will ask you about allergies to medicine, etc. Please remember to bring your health insurance card. If you forget it, you will be charged the full amount.