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Guidelines of New Businesses in the Industry for Extending Healthy Life Expectancy

On January 24, 2014, the Cabinet approved the Action Plan for Strengthening Industrial Competitiveness. Based on the plan, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) categorized businesses with high demand from business owners who intend to start new businesses in the industry for extending healthy life expectancy into five groups and compiled the information into guidelines, as a part of the efforts for operating the System to Remove the Gray Zone Areas, a measure described in the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act, which was enforced on January 20, 2014. The guidelines are a collection of streamlined information on basic legal interpretations, what sorts of things business owners should note, and other general points, which are useful as a reference when business owners embark on new businesses.

1. Outline of the guidelines

Article 9 of the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act stipulates that those who intend to embark on new businesses may confirm with the Competent Minister the interpretation of the laws related to their new businesses and how far the current regulations in the related fields are applied to them (System to Remove the Gray Zone Areas).

Regarding the extending healthy life expectancy industry sector, an area closely related to the fields of medical services and nursing care, METI categorized referential information on basic legal interpretations, what sorts of things business owners should note, and other general points, by each business with high demand from business owners into five groups, and compiled the guidelines. The guidelines aim to provide a reference for business owners so that they are able to start new businesses related to the industry.

METI expects that business owners will be able to refer to the guidelines when they embark on new businesses and that they will also utilize the System to Remove Gray Zone Areas for individual business cases with different activities.

In addition, the guidelines are to be revised from time to time if necessary, reflecting the future situations of requests submitted by entities for enjoying the System to Remove Gray Zone Areas.

2. Five categories described in the guidelines

Case 1: Private businesses that provide physical and nutritional advice to users, based on the physical and nutritional advice and recommendations from doctors.

Case 2: Medical corporations that provide meal delivery and other services for outpatients.

Case 3: Private businesses that provide simple medical checks or measuring services.

Case 4: Insurers that provide employees’ insurance services and analysis companies that are commissioned by the insurers analyze receipt data and other information to ascertain the health conditions of health insurance subscribers, as an effort for enhancing the health conditions of the insured persons.

Case 5: Private businesses, medical organizations, social welfare corporations, municipalities and other entities that jointly provide multiple services for supporting users’ lives.

For further details, see the Japanese language press release.

Release Date

March 31, 2014

Division in Charge

Healthcare Industries Division, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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