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Hospitals, clinics hit hard by coronavirus

  • June 23, 2020
  • , Nikkei
  • JMH Summary

Nikkei ran a prominent article on the economic difficulties that many hospitals and clinics are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic because of a sharp drop in income. The paper attributed the decline to outpatients’ hesitancy to see doctors out of fear of being infected with the coronavirus at medical institutions and the prolonged suspension of surgeries and other procedure to shift existing medical resources to the treatment of COVID-19 patients. One estimate shows that university hospitals alone are expected to lose 500 billon yen ($4.7 billion) this year. As hospital operators have explained that many outpatients are still steering clear of medical institutions even though the state of emergency was lifted more than a month ago, the daily said it is essential for the GOJ to expand PCR and other diagnostic testing for healthcare providers so that people can feel safe seeking medical attention. The paper also urged the central and local governments to launch makeshift hospitals to treat COVID-19 patients exclusively in order to reduce the number of such patients at other general hospitals.

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