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The Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research

Improving Accessibility of Home-visit Nursing Services

Japan is a super-aging society, and it is predicted that 1.68 million people will die annually by 2040. There is an urgent need to develop a system that allows people to receive care at home and die with peace of mind. In addition, as hospital stays become shorter, there is a growing need for home-visit nursing services after patients are discharged, but the availability such services is not keeping up with demand. One major reason for this is that the current system does not allow the public to directly select and use specific home-visit nursing services. Under Japan’s long-term care insurance, care managers must first include the use of home-visit nursing services in the care plan (as a consequence of which, home-visit nurses are now compelled to persuade physicians and care managers to utilize their services). The purpose of this research program is to develop simple procedures for communication between hospital nurses and home-care nurses to enable a smooth transition to in-home care when patients are discharged. Recommendations will also be made for policies to promote the utilization of such a system.

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