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Japan to crack down on overweight people

Date Posted: 2008-03-05

The Japanese government is implementing a program called ‘The Metabolic Syndrome’ to improve health monitoring, and says it will penalize communities who don’t get with the program.
Officials call The Metabolic Syndrome a sickness for those who gain weight, are 40~74 years of age, and whose waistlines are more than 85cm for men and 90cm for women. If people fail to get medical examinations, people’s special health checks or special health check advice, beginning in 2012 the government will impose penalties on cities, towns and villages, passing on a higher burden for health insurance financial penalties. The government says health costs are rising because people aren’t taking proper care of themselves.
Okinawa municipalities are scrambling to begin free medical examinations. Health examinations for The Metabolic Syndrome will begin in April, with nine communities actually offering them free. Others, citing budget constraints, will charge ¥500~1,000 for the examinations.
Free examinations will be given by Naha, Itoman, Tomigusuku, Miyakojima and Haebaru Cities, Yaeso, Nishihara and Yonabaru Towns, and Tarama Village. Kadena Town, Nago City, Nanjo City, Ishigaki City, Higashi Village an Zamami Village say they’re still trying to decide whether to charge for the examinations, or administer them free.

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