The Current Situation of Aging Japanese Retirees and Their Impacts on Medical Services in Chiang Mai Province, Thailand

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Elisa Nishikito


This study aimed at investigating the current situation of aging Japanese retirees and their impacts
on medical services in Chiang Mai Province, Thailand. Data were gathered from in-depth interviews
with 19 participants comprising of Japanese retirees, representatives of Japanese associations,
support organizations, and medical facilities where this group is known for seeking medical
assistance. The results revealed that private hospitals in Chiang Mai have interpreters and offer
quick service. However, medical fees are expensive, and they might not be well-equipped for
complex and specialized treatment, which restricts the provision of services. At public hospitals,
the lack of interpreters, unpaid medical bills by Japanese retirees who lack financial resources,
and Japanese retirees who are near death and brought in to pass away are an extra burden to
the system. Cases of Japanese retirees at hospitals in Chiang Mai were revealed to be lower
than 1% of the total cases. However, they reflect the problems and issues faced by this group.
Therefore, recommendations for improving medical services and reconsidering the long-stay
program are presented.


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