One definition of health care could be stated from its recipients’ standpoint as services maintaining their wellness and relieving them from diseases and injuries. In this context, health care is directly linked to the basic rights of all citizens.
Fortunately, the standard of medical services achieved in Japan is foremost in the world, and this fact is attested to by the long average life span and the low infant mortality rate. These high standard services are the most valuable asset available to citizens of Japan today.
However, it is clear that there are some severe issues awaiting ahead of us. For example, the rapid growth of elderly population will increase demands for medical services, as well as medical expenses. As a result, we are going to be confronted with decision making on limited resources while demands for medical services increase.
Ideally, optimum health care should be provided to all citizens and the quality of care should not be influenced by financial constraints, for health care is closely related to the dignity of every person as a human being. However, in reality, actual practice operates under limitations of resources. It is inevitable that economic efficiency must be introduced in order to provide the best care within the given limitations.
As we look toward the future, we should realize there must be a balance between health care and the economy, as well as long-term stabilization of the demand-supply relationship in health care. To achieve this goal, it is necessary to utilize the wisdom of mankind, and, on the basis of social consensus, to find the best solutions for meeting the needs of future decades. Unfortunately, to date, Japan has not yet developed a system for the economic research into health care even though a need for these studies has been increasing. It has long been our desire to fulfill and meet these requirements in an affirmative manner.
The Health Care Science Institute (HCI) was founded in order to perform this function. HCI is now conducting various studies on health care using methods and techniques of health economics and other disciplines, and at the same time, assisting young researchers financially. In addition, HCI also supports research activities concerning health care by providing grants, and tries to contribute to the development of academic field in health care without setting any boundaries among disciplines.
HCI was established by Eisai Co., Ltd., as a part of its memorial activities for its 50th anniversary in November 1991. HCI endeavors to promote sociological and anthropological studies concerning health care in order to realize wellness for all citizens and improvement in their social welfare from long-term and international viewpoints.
HCI sincerely hopes to have your support and encouragement.
October 1, 1990
Wataru Mori, M.D., Ph.D.
Former President, The University of Tokyo
Emeritus Professor, Keio University
Representative Director, Chairman, Eisai Co., Ltd.
Representative Director, President and CEO, Eisai Co., Ltd.