VISA / Residing in Japan

For those who would like to apply for the "Visa for Medical Stay"

March 12, 2013

1. What is "Visa for Medical Stay"?

"Visa for Medical Stay" is a visa issued to foreign patients wishing to visit Japan for medical purposes (including full medical check-ups). The visa is issued to their accompanying person(s) as well if necessary and as needed.

(1) Scope of medical services

Applicable medical services include not only medical treatment at a medical institution, but a variety of services ranging from full medical check-ups and medical examinations to recuperation such as hot springs recuperation.

  • Applicable medical services include any acts instructed by medical institutions in Japan (including full medical check-ups, medical examinations, medical check-ups, dental care and recuperation [including hot springs recuperation of 90 days or less]).

(2) Multiple Visas

Multiple visas may be issued to foreign patients, if necessary and as needed.

  • However, a multiple visa may be issued only when each visit to Japan is for a period of 90 days or less. In order to apply for a multiple visa, foreign patients are required to present a Medical Treatment Plan from a physician in Japan, which may be obtained through a guarantor.

(3) Accompanying Person(s)

Not only family members but also non-family members of foreign patients are permitted to accompany them, if necessary and as needed.

  • Accompanying person(s) may be issued the same visa as foreign patients, if necessary and as needed. Accompanying person(s) are to visit Japan to take personal care of foreign patients and are not allowed to engage in income-generating businesses or activities to receive remuneration.

(4) Period of Validity

3 years, if necessary and as needed.

  • The period of validity is determined based on the clinical condition of foreign patients and other factors.

(5) Period of Stay

A maximum of 6 months. The period of stay is determined based on the clinical condition of foreign patients and other factors.

  • Foreign patients are required to stay in a Japanese medical institution if the expected period of stay is longer than 90 days. In such cases, those foreign patients are required to obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from the Immigration Bureau of the Ministry of Justice through a staff member of the medical institution where the foreign patients are to be hospitalized or through their family member who lives in Japan.

2. Overview of the Visa Application Process

  • (1) Foreign patients seeking medical treatment or other medical services at a Japanese medical institution should refer to the lists of guarantors (e.g., medical coordinators, travel agencies) registered for this visa scheme. The lists are at the end of this document. Foreign patients should contact one of the guarantors, and request arrangements for receiving medical services.
  • (2) The host medical institution is determined through consultation with guarantors that foreign patients select from the lists. Foreign patients should obtain, via the guarantors, a "Certificate from the medical institution about the planned medical services and references from the guarantor" (as well as a Medical Treatment Plan, if necessary).
  • (3) When applying for a visa at the Japanese Embassy or Consulate-General, foreign patients need to present the documents below (accompanying persons need to present (A)-(C) and (F)). If foreign patients need to stay in Japan longer than 90 days to receive medical services while staying at a medical institution, a staff member of the medical institution in Japan where the foreign patients are to be hospitalized or their family members who live in Japan need to obtain (G) below, a Certificate of Eligibility, from the Immigration Bureau of the Ministry of Justice on behalf of the foreign patients. Foreign patients then need to present the Certificate of Eligibility together with other documents to the Japanese Embassy or Consulate-General.
    • (A) Passport
    • (B) Visa Application Form
    • (C) Photo
    • (D) "Certificate from a medical institution about the planned medical services and references from a guarantor"
    • (E) Documents showing the foreign patient's financial situation (e.g., a bank statement)

      (Note: The documents which need to be presented may vary depending on the nationality of the foreign patient. Please contact the Japanese Embassy or Consulate-General to see what specific documents need to be presented.)

    • (F) A document proving the foreign patient's identity

      (Note: The documents which need to be presented may vary depending on the nationality of the foreign patient. Please contact the Japanese Embassy or Consulate-General to see what specific documents need to be presented.)

    • (G) Certificate of Eligibility (when the foreign patient needs to stay longer than 90 days to be hospitalized and receive medical services)
    • (H) Medical Treatment Plan (when the foreign patient needs to make multiple visits to Japan to receive treatment)