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Author Topic: Treatment for Foreigners in Japan  (Read 592 times)

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Offline Blaque_Wanderer

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Treatment for Foreigners in Japan
« on: April 21, 2020, 01:33:12 pm »
Hi there,

I am considering moving to Japan/ Hong Kong for work.
To anyone currently living or lived in Japan/ Hong Kobg as a foreigner please help with any information , knowledge or experience:

What options are available for acquiring medication as a foreigner, I am on Atripla?
What would be the cost for a monthly supply?
If one is to buy medication from Thailand, if this is an option, how much of a supply would the medical certificate for importing medication permit?

Thanks in advance.

Offline Expat1

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Re: Treatment for Foreigners in Japan
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2020, 02:04:49 pm »
Currently no foreigners are permitted into Thailand due to covid19 rules.  Atripla  is available here in Thailand At around 3600 Baht, but most people use the generic teevir which is about 1100 Baht at Thai red cross and about double that in Private hospitals. 

Offline Jim Allen

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Re: Treatment for Foreigners in Japan
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2020, 03:16:03 pm »

Not much to add but wanted to say welcome to the forum.

Best, Jim
HIV 101 - Everything you need to know
HIV 101
Read more about Testing here:
HIV Testing
Read about Treatment-as-Prevention (TasP) here:
You can read about HIV prevention here:
HIV prevention
Read about PEP and PrEP here
PEP and PrEP

Offline Blaque_Wanderer

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Re: Treatment for Foreigners in Japan
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2020, 04:55:56 pm »
Thank you Expat1  and Jim Allen.

Offline Blaque_Wanderer

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Re: Treatment for Foreigners in Japan
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2020, 07:52:50 am »
Hi there,

I reached out to an organization in Japan (ptokyo.org) to find information about my questions above. Below is the information I got in case someone else wants to know (copied and pasted):

This is SHARE, share.or.jp, an NPO supporting migrant health located in Tokyo.

First of all,  please find general infomation for those who are planning
to live in Japan.

”General guidance for people with HIV under treatment who are moving to Japan”

In Japan, cost of anti-retroviral treatment for HIV is expensive, approximately 160,000 to 200,000 yen per a month.
In order to reduce this high cost self-pay medical fee, most of people
with HIV are on official subsidization program.  Following is a
procedure to apply for the program;

(1)     Enrollment of social health insurance or national health insurance.
You are required to enroll social health insurance or national health insurance, if you stay in Japan for over 3 months with working/residential visa.
Please make sure whether your visa status is eligible for enrolling the
health insurance.  Notice that some of visa status such like tourist and
diplomat visa, do not have eligibility.
In a case you are an employee of the company that has many employees,
your employer has a responsibility to let you join the social health
insurance.  Please make sure in advance whether your employer would
provide you social health insurance.  If you are unemployed,
self-employed, or an employee of a company with a small number of
employees, please consult with a national health insurance division at a
municipal office, where you stay in Japan.  Monthly insurance premium
depends on your income.

(2)     Certification of the physically disabled
Medical expense of ARV is very high.   
In Japan, one who is registered as a “Disabled person with having
immune disorders” could receive financial assistance to reduce medical
fee.  The Government of Japan, therefore, recommends people with HIV who
need ARV treatment apply for the registration.  Copayment would be less
than 10,000 yen for most cases.  Please notice that those with mild
disability (e.g. CD4 counts is 500 or higher than 500) might have
limited financial assistance.  Additionally, only those with eligibility
of health insurance could receive the financial assistance.   Your
doctor would write an application for certification of the physically
disabled, and it is necessary for him/her to have your laboratory data
at the time of diagnosis and data of low CD4 counts before you started
medication.  Followings are data you are required to submit;

a.      Information on diagnosis of HIV infection
Date of HIV screeing test resulting positive and testing method (EIA, ELISA, PA, ICG, or some others)
Date of confirmatory test and testing method (Western Blott or PCR)
b.      Information on your medical condition
white blood cell count (WBC /mcr. l)
Hemoglobin (Hb g/dl)
platelet count (PLT /mcr. l)
CD4 count ( /mcr. L)
Viral load (VL copies/ml)
You need two sets of test results with more than 4-week interval.
Please submit data when CD4 counts were the lowest and the second lowest.
These data should show your immunological deterioration before receiving
c.      Current therapeutic regimen
This is required for further treatment in Japan, not for application for the registration.
Please ask your doctor to refer clearly names and dosage of drugs you
are taking.  If there are any drugs you ever take that develop side
effect, mention them as well.

Photocopies of test reports mentioned above should be attached.  I
t is necessary that prescriptions are also mentioned in a referral form
signed by your doctor.   

For further information please contact to us.

June 11, 2015

In terms of your medication, Atripla, we may not have the exact same
ones.  However, you may be able to get similar formula combining some
medications.  Your doctor will prescribe you considering your current
medication and health condition.

As mentioned above, even you are qualified to receive the assistance, it
takes time.  It is recommended to bring your medication at least for
a month with you.

As known, the medical situation worldwide including Japan is quite
difficult now because of spread of COVID-19.  Hope you got necessary
information including immigration control in planning to come to Japan in
the future.

For your information this is another NPO supporting people with HIV
positive status. Their website may be helpful for you.


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