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Things You Should Know About Medical Emergency Before Traveling To Japan

things you need to know what you should do in medical emergency case during traveling in Japan Travel Guide

I believe everybody prepares enough for health conditions to travel abroad.

There is no guarantee that your health condition keeps usual while traveling.

Different circumstances can cause you to get sick easily because of the decreased immune system.

You may have to get over with leaving in the early morning, a long flight, connection, layover.

Across multiple time zones brings you terrible jet lag symptoms.

Even after arriving, different foods, the language, the culture will bring you lots of stresses.

When you go to Japan in the summer season, be aware of heat illness.

Not only internal health but also you have to be careful of an injury.

See, there are many things to be careful of when traveling to different countries.

So today, I am going to tell you when you get sick, injured, and in an emergency situation in Japan, what you should do.

Before Traveling

First, Check out the insurance policy and credit card contract that you own currently.

You need to make sure the insurance policy covers global medical assist, emergency evacuation.

In Japan, when a foreign tourist visiting Japan is treated at a Japanese medical institution, he/she will be fully responsible to pay for it.

In case you think you need it, there is an insurance policy available for foreign visitors even after entering Japan.

Check out insurance coverage for a car accident if you plan to drive in Japan.

In fact, the number of car accidents caused by foreign visitors has been increasing. (*Especially, in Okinawa and Hokkaido.)

Helplines For International Travelers

Use helpline with your language speakers in Japan

In case you get sick or injured, there are helplines for foreign travelers who don’t understand Japanese.

AMDA Medical Information center

  • 03-6223-9266
  • Weekday 10 a.m. – 3 p. m. (No service on weekends and Dec 29 – Jan 3)
  • Chinese/English/Korean/Spanish/Thai/
  • The interpreter is provided over the phone if needs during your visit to doctors.  Only medical providers can request this service. To use the service, please ask them first for details.

Japan Helpline

  • 0120 461 997 / 0570 000 911
  • 24hrs / 7 days a week
  • English

Japan Visitor Hotline

  • 050-3816-2787
  • 24hrs / 7 days a week
  • Chinese/English/Korean

Himawari (Tokyo Metropolitan Medical Institution Information Service)

It is available in the Tokyo area only.

  • 03-5285-8181 (Daily 9 a.m.- 8 p.m.)
  • Chinese/English/Korean/Spanish/Thai
  • Medical and pharmacy functions guide (available Tokyo area only) *Once you get into the site, change languages on the top of the right.

Walk-in patients Are Available In Japan

In the Japanese health care system, you don’t have to make an appointment through a medical insurance company or provider.

You can do a walk-in.

If you are very rich or your sick isn’t severe, you don’t have to be nervous about the cost.

Otherwise, the first step is to contact your health insurance company to verify whether your emergency medical coverage, and they can provide a specific hospital to go to.

Bring enough cash ( 20,000 – 50,000 yen) with you in case some clinics and hospitals don’t accept credit card paying.

Family clinic ( internal medicine)Nai ka内科
Child clinicSyouni ka 小児科
Orthopedic clinicGe ka, Seikei ge ka 外科, 整形外科
Skin clinicHifu ka皮膚科
Eye clinicGan ka眼科
PolyclinicSougou byouin総合病院

Keep Your Country’s Embassy Or Consulate Contact Info

Or One of the options, call an embassy or a consulate of your home country.

Please make sure sites of the embassies of your home countries by yourself before calling. office hours, telephone numbers, and what they can do for you.

Embassy of the United States

1 Chome-10-5 Akasaka, Minato City, Tokyo 107-8420
Tel: 03-3224-5000 Emergency call: 03-3224-5000

Embassy of the Republic of Korea

Chome-2-5 Minamiazabu, Minato City, Tokyo 106-0047
Tel: 03-3452-7611 Emergency call:070-2153-5454

Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Japan

3 Chome-4-33 Motoazabu, Minato City, Tokyo 106-0046

Embassy of Canada to Japan

7 Chome-3-38 Akasaka, Minato City, Tokyo 107-0052

British Embassy Tokyo

1 Chome, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 102-8381

Embassy of France

4 Chome-11-44 Minamiazabu, Minato City, Tokyo 106-8514

*All Embassies in Tokyo only. If you are in other areas, please make sure the embassy or the consulate nearby.

Drug stores in Japan

If you feel sick, but it seems you can deal with it, drug stores are everywhere in Japan.

Popular drug store chains in Japan are,

  • Matsumoto Kiyoshi
  • Tsuruha drug
  • Sun Drug
  • Sugi Yakkyoku
  • Kokokara fine
  • Genky ( Fukui, Ishikawa, Gifu, Aichi prefectures).

You can also buy medications for major symptoms at convenience stores too.

Pack the first aid kit and major medications in your suitcase for your trip, so you don’t have to run to the stores.

Call 119 In To Call Ambulance In Japan

Call 119

If you or your company are in an emergency condition, call “119” to get an ambulance.

You need to tell an operator which you need for “an ambulance” or “fire truck” once an operator answers your call.

In Tokyo fire departments, there are English-speaking operators, but they may not available all the time.

Find someone who can speak Japanese if you can.

You can also check here, how to call an ambulance in Japan with your language.

Before you call 119…

Call helpline first If you are not sure you need to call an ambulance or not,

They will give you medical advice or a medical provider where your language speaker is available.

An as a serious issue in Japan, not only the shortage of ambulances are getting a serious issue in Japan, but also the shortage of hospitals where it is available for ER.

In the worst case, you will be not getting medical practice as soon as needed.

Check List


Insurance Policy

  • Make sure your insurance coverage with your carrier and specifically identify whether or not you are covered while traveling to foreign countries.
  • Senior citizens may need to contact the AARP for information about foreign medical care coverage with Medicare supplement plans.
  • Make sure to have your health insurance card and a claim form with you while traveling.
  • If your insurance policy does not cover you overseas, you should consider buying a travel insurance policy.


  • Fill out the information page on your passport, providing the name, address, and telephone number of someone to contact in case of an emergency.
  • Get a letter from your healthcare provider describing your health history, medicines, allergies, and immunization records.
  • Make a list or bring prescription medicines you are currently taking.
  • Make a list of the emergency telephone numbers in Japan, such as embassy or consulate, or helpline and keep it all the time on your trip.

CDC Pack List

Connect Network

Purchase an international SIM card or change your phone plan
Whenever you need to contact your family, friends, and the insurance company in your country, it is better to have a carrier connection in Japan. If you consider buying a SIM card you can check out this site. (purchasing SIM card is not an affiliate program.)

In conclusion… 

All the information above is very important to you when you travel to Japan.

No one wants to get sick or an accident during the trip but if you prepare enough in case of an emergency situation, you can receive medical care smoothly.

Your life is the most important.

things you need to know what you should do in medical emergency case during traveling in Japan

What You Should Know About Traveling To Japan

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