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IDJ-ENGLISH Japan’s Strengths are Comprehensive Support

Special Feature Articles on Healthcare and Medical Cooperation

Japan’s Strengths are Comprehensive Support

Kazuhiro Abe,
International Techno Center Co., Ltd

The urgent task is to prevent the spread of infection at medical fronts

The COVID-19 pandemic is not over yet. However, the global challenge in the field of health care that has emerged from this situation is how to take measures to prevent healthcare-associated infection (HAI). This means the measures to prevent creating new infections not only in medical facilities but also in all places of medical care.
For example, patients who come to the hospital with wounds should not contract COVID-19 there, or medical personnel who have been to home care should not be affected.  It is an essential measure to ensure the safety of medical care.
In Japan, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare and local governments have created guidelines, and each medical institution has created and implemented manuals. However, in developing countries, even national guidelines have not been created yet. In terms of development cooperation, it is important to provide such institutional support.

Utilizing the results of technical cooperation projects

On the other hand, if you look at medical sites in developing countries, there are many things that need to be done not only to develop national guidelines, but also to create manuals for each medical institution based on guidelines and to implement them on site. In order to do so, Japan’s technology cooperation projects for human resource development cooperation should be utilized.
From 2014 to 2018, our company conducted technical cooperation in Myanmar to strengthen the management of healthcare plans. Medical sites in remote areas were constantly faced with labor shortages. Therefore, we started not from management lectures but from “D = do” of PDCA cycle (Plan, Do, Check and Action) taking up urgent problems for them. For health education in pediatric wards, health guidance by skits for expectant women, and improvement of the hospital hygiene environment, Japan’s approach of 5S/KAIZEN was introduced. Then the staff put them into practice.
Finally, they created the hospital’s own manual to prevent hospital acquired infections by extending 5S/KAIZEN activities based on the guidelines of the Ministry of Health. As a result of the technical cooperation project, it is more important for them to make, use, and improve manuals on their own than to complete manuals. The strengths of such technical cooperation projects could also be used to support future measures to prevent HAI.

Creating synergy effects

We are currently conducting technical cooperation projects such as the “Non-Infectious Disease Prevention Project” and the “Information Gathering and Confirmation Survey on the Demand for Remote Training on Hospital Infection Control” in Uzbekistan.
Through such technical cooperation, we are conducting health promotions, screening of lifestyle diseases, counseling, etc. in two states.  Although such activities have not started due to the COVID-19 infection spread, we are conducting remote surveys and preparing baseline surveys. This technical cooperation also adds HAI prevention as one of the implementation policies.
In addition, information gathering and confirmation surveys are projects adopted in the COVID-19 crisis situation and are targeted at sites of technical cooperation. It is a demonstration-type investigation to conduct remote training on hospital infection control and to consider the future direction of cooperation.
In both projects, there are common issues, such as the prevention of HAI and the use of remote training, to be focused on in the COVID-19 crisis situation.
We would like to create synergies between the two projects. Japan’s health and medical cooperation, which has been a strength for more than 60 years in building hospitals with yen loans, providing medical equipment by grant aid, and human resource development and comprehensive initiatives in technical cooperation professionals, may include the possibility of creating such synergies. Japan should take such healthcare and medical cooperation as a new strength.


特集・再考 日本の保健医療協力


代表取締役 阿部 一博氏




国際開発ジャーナル 2021年1月号 掲載記事
(特集 再考 日本の保健医療協力より)





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