From Jiji Press
April 6th 2020
TOKYO – Japan will liberalize online diagnoses at the time of the initial contact with patients as a temporary measure to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus inside hospitals, it was learned Monday.
The deregulatory measure, expected to be approved formally Tuesday, will be in place until the COVID-19 outbreak comes under control. Whether the measure should be maintained will be checked every three months through prefecture-by-prefecture surveys.
It will allow doctors to give medical diagnoses and treatment to patients, including those with no past medical records available at the hospitals, online or by telephone from their first contact. The current rules basically require the procedures to be done in person at the time of the initial contact.
The official medical service price for online diagnosis will be raised from the current 710 yen to 2,000 yen, on par with in-person consultations.
The government decided to make the regulatory change a temporary measure in light of concerns raised by the Japan Medical Association.