A year ago, Japan was the only country to score well on its health rankings.
The country has been a top-performing economy, too, with the economy growing at a healthy 7.3 percent last year.
Now, Japan is on the verge of being ranked as the worst health care performer in the world.
“We are not in the best shape,” said Satoshi Okamoto, the country’s minister of health, as he unveiled a plan to address the nation ‘s rising health woes.
Japan’s health care system has been criticized by the World Health Organization for its poor efficiency, understaffing and lack of patient care.
As a result, the government has been grappling with the biggest challenge facing its government: how to address rising costs and a ballooning health care deficit.
In a recent study, the U.N. health agency ranked Japan among the world’s worst performers in its efforts to combat the rising cost of health care, even though its population has grown by roughly 13 million people since the crisis began.
Health care costs have grown at an average annual rate of 6.3% in the last five years.
But as the country has grown more prosperous, costs have fallen, and the gap between the richest and poorest has shrunk.
At the same time, health care has become increasingly complex, as new drugs and treatments have emerged to help the poor.
The result is that Japan has a large number of health systems that are understaffed and are plagued by long wait times for tests and other procedures.
But many people still struggle to access quality care, Okamoto said, even as the government tries to address its chronic budget shortfalls by offering more tax breaks and tax incentives for businesses.
“Our biggest challenge right now is to address that issue of lack of access and the lack of care,” he said.
The health care crisis has left the country at the edge of an economic downturn that could be decades old.
The world’s second-largest economy has been struggling to meet its financial obligations to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other countries since the onset of the pandemic.
In its latest quarterly financial report released this month, the Japanese government said it was still facing a shortfall of $14.4 billion on its debt to the IMF and World Bank, while it was struggling to pay its employees and retirees.
The gap between rich and poor has widened over the past decade, the report said.
But the health system’s problems have grown worse since the pandemics began.
Since 2010, Japan’s government has spent almost $8 billion on the health care industry.
In the past two years, the number of hospitals has shrunk by more than 40%, and the number and size of health clinics has grown, according to the ministry of health.
Okamoto also unveiled a new plan that will see Japan’s state-run hospitals open a new $1 billion operating center in 2020 to cater to the growing number of patients and new patients.
“The health system is a big problem and needs a big help,” said Toshihide Matsuura, a Tokyo-based analyst with Berenberg Securities.
“This new hospital facility will be an important step toward solving the health health care problem.”
Healthcare in the country is still largely private.
But some of the new facilities will be funded by private philanthropists and by the government.
This will be a big boon for hospitals, which are in need of more staff and can’t afford to operate without them.
The government hopes the new hospital will provide a new platform for the government to develop and test new medicines, and will give the government more time to prepare for the pandemia.
“It will be important for the Japanese health system to take advantage of the [new] facilities,” said Nobuyuki Nakano, the health minister.
“They will make a big contribution.”
But health care experts worry that the new centers could leave the country with a system that is not efficient enough to care for patients who can’t pay.
The new centers will be run by a private company, which could make the health centers less efficient and more costly to operate.
And as hospitals and clinics become increasingly staffed by patients, the numbers of doctors will also grow.
In December, the United Nations health agency warned that Japan’s population could double by 2050 to nearly 1.2 billion.
As the country tries to find ways to handle the growing numbers of patients, Okawa said he is confident the government will continue to do its part to improve care.
“When it comes to the quality of the health services, I believe we will be able to manage the problems in the future,” he told reporters.
Read more: Health care crisis: Japan’s biggest challenges ahead of pandemic