It is a requirement for international students staying in Japan for 3 months of longer to enroll in health insurance upon your arrival in Japan. If you do not enroll in National Health Insurance, you will have to pay expensive medical fees when being examined or treated at a hospital. If you enroll in this insurance, you will only have to pay 30% of the total medical expenses if you are treated at a hospital (medical fees must be paid at the hospital’s cashier desk).
[How to Enroll]
You should enroll at the National Health Insurance and Pension Division at your local ward office. You will need your residence card to apply. After completing the enrollment procedure, your insurance card will be posted to your home.
The insurance premium varies according to your income (income from casual work, etc. Scholarships are not counted as income). The payment book will be posted to your home in June each year and you pay the premium for the year in 10 installments.
＜Partial Subsidy for the National Health Insurance Premium＞
The University of Kitakyushu International Student Support Society provides a subsidy to cover part of the cost of the National Health Insurance premium. The subsidy rate is about 90% of the insurance premium for those on the lowest income level (in FY2015, the maximum amount of subsidy was 16,000 yen).
* Applying for the subsidy
You apply for the subsidy after paying your insurance premium for the year. Please complete the designated application form and submit it along with the receipt for your insurance premium.
[National Health Insurance Tax Declaration]
A form called the National Health Insurance Tax Declaration will be sent to you by post in January or thereabouts. This document is used to declare whether or not you have any income, so it will affect your insurance premium for the following financial year.
Once it arrives, please complete it and return it without fail. If you do not submit this declaration, you will not receive a reduction in your insurance premium for the following financial year and you will be charged a high premium.
[Before Returning Home]
When you are returning home, please go to the National Health Insurance and Pension Division at your local ward office in advance and ensure that you return your insurance card and pay any installments of the insurance premium that are still outstanding.