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Aging Population in Japan

Earlier this month we were looking at some of the factors affecting the life science industries today. Undeniably, the world’s aging population is changing the priorities of health care delivery and infrastructure all over the globe. With an older population, there’s a new driving focus on quality of life, chronic conditions, and supporting the aging community. The industry faces numerous challenges, from developing new products and technologies to pressures to reduce the associated costs.

Translation for an Aging Population

The focus on health care for this growing population is undoubtedly affecting multiple industries. The translation industry is no exception. With development of drugs, therapies, and healthcare delivery comes the need for translation as companies reach towards this growing market. On top of the clinical trial translation needs for companies as various stages of clinical trials are performed on multiple continents, healthcare delivery itself has translation needs in patient facing literature. Patient education for chronic conditions and ailments in the form of literature, pamphlets, and information sessions will need to reach a variety of cultural and language audiences.

Language itself is often a barrier when receiving treatment or communicating with health care practitioners, especially with an aging population. It is absolutely crucial that communication is clear and concise between the patient and caregiver. Interpretation services are likely to see an increased need as a result of this. Whether it’s in a direct health care setting, patient consent for clinical trials, or tele-health, interpreters are filling this need.

Last week’s post discussed Japan’s “Rational Medicine” Initiative and the PDMA’s emphasis on innovation in the industry. Not unique in this challenge, countries all over the world are developing strategies to prepare for the increase in population over the age of 65. Healthcare delivery is a significant area that governments are looking at worldwide, as the next few decades will change drastically. Japan is undoubtedly facing this challenge head on. So, to expand on this a little, I want to share with you an interesting article I was reading about Japan’s approach to their rapidly aging population.