The medical insurance system of Japan is based on the Universal Medical Care System guaranteed by the provision of the Article 25 of the Constitution of Japan, which states that ''All the people shall have the right to live a healthy, cultural and minimum standard of life.'' The health insurance system of Japan comprises the medical insurance system and the health care system for the longlived. Medical care insurance includes the employees' health insurance (Social Insurance) that covers employees of private companies and their families and community insurance (National Health Insurance) that covers the selfemployed. Each medical insurance system has its own medical care system for the retired and their families. The health care system for the long-lived covers people of over 75 years of age (over 65 years in people with a certain handicap). There is also a system under which all or part of the medical expenses is reimbursed by public expenditure or the cost of medical care not covered by health insurance is paid by the government. This system is referred to collectively as the ''the public payment system of medical expenses.'' To support the realization of the purpose of this system, there is a treatment research enterprise for specified diseases (intractable diseases). Because of the high mortality rate, acute pancreatitis is specified as an intractable disease for the purpose of reducing its mortality rate, and treatment expenses of patients are paid in full by the government dating back to the day when the application was made for a certificate verifying that he or she has severe acute pancreatitis.
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