A couple of weeks ago I had to go into a local hospital for a small operation and the entire experience reminded me why I am so in love with the Japanese healthcare system.
Three days of hospital stay and an operation would have cost me a pretty penny in South Africa, but here in Japan the national health system helps me out quite a bit which meant I only had to cover 30% of the cost out of my own pocket. Much more conducive to a happy wallet and a happy me!
Add to that the quality of the staff and doctors as well as the exceedingly short waiting times for appointments and I’m glad that I managed to get through the entire experience here in Japan even though my Japanese is far from proficient when it comes to describing medical problems and procedures.
As for the actual operation and stay, everything went as well as I could have hoped and I had little to no pain or discomfort during the entire ordeal. There isn’t a single time I felt like I got anything less than the best of service from everyone at the hospital and all the patients were well-behaved and respectful of the staff.
What’s even more amazing is that this hospital is in one of the more rural areas where I live and yet is state of the art and as clean as can be. And this is something that is very common throughout Japan’s rural areas. Access to world-class healthcare is always easily within reach.
Finally, I want to give a big shout out to the doctors and nurses that took care of me during my short stay. They helped calm my nerves and kept me healthy and for that I really am very grateful.
And if you’re wondering about the title of this post, I ended up with sixteen stitches that the doctor removed over two weeks, not the happiest of experiences for me!
Also published on Medium.