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Japan: Government to Improve Medical Care Response to Nuclear Accidents


The government is planning to enhance medical preparedness for nuclear accidents by designating "nuclear disaster hub hospitals" capable of treating patients with low-dose radiation exposure.The Nuclear Regulation Authority’s secretariat will set up a team to discuss revisions to the current system based on lessons learned from the disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, sources said. The core hospitals will be selected from among those offering emergency care on a daily basis within a 30-kilometer radius of a nuclear power plant and adjacent areas. The hospitals will receive practical training on a regular basis so that r
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Japan: SDF Paramedics May Get OK to Treat Injured Military Personnel in Attack


Tokyo: The government is considering granting Self-Defense Forces paramedics more discretionary authority in treating injured people if Japan comes under attack from foreign military forces, a government source said on January 27 Monday. As the government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is seeking more security roles for the SDF abroad as part of his drive to redefine the nation’s security framework, it has determined it is necessary to establish more effective logistic support system, according to the source. Under the new plan, the Defense Ministry will allow SDF paramedics within five years to perform such medical procedures as creati
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Japan: Government Planning Rapid Disaster Response


The government will create small special response units in fiscal 2014 to carry out rapid response reconnaissance in disaster-hit areas. The units will fall under the Fire and Disaster Management Agency of the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry and be used to better cope with major disasters, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned. The joint mobile units are to be created in light of bitter lessons learned following the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011, when it took time to dispatch fire-fighters to some disaster-hit areas, because authorities were unable to fully comprehend conditions, due to the inability to get information on severe
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Japan: Study Links Yellow Dust to More People Going to Emergency Rooms


Tokyo: A study released on March 13 Wednesday by a team of Japanese researchers found emergency room admissions increased when levels of yellow dust originating in China were high. The team including doctor Kayo Ueda, a researcher with the National Institute for Environmental Studies, found the rise could be due to the presence of air pollutants carried together with the yellow dust. Air pollutants include PM2.5, hazardous particulate matter measuring below 2.5 microns, or 2.5 thousandths of a millimeter, in diameter, which can be absorbed by the lungs and lead to heart and lung diseases. The pollutants are believed to cause asthma, bronchi
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Japan: Fukui, Neighbors Agree on Disaster Cooperation


Fukui Prefecture will jointly participate in disaster drills and emergency planning with neighboring Ishikawa and Nara prefectures in the event of a natural disaster or nuclear accident, in agreements reached June 11. Fukui is home to 13 of Japan’s 48 commercial reactors. Fukui’s deals with Ishikawa and Nara include commitments to exchange doctors, emergency personnel and volunteers to send food and medical supplies and to help establish shelters as needed.Nara also agreed to start exchanging data with Fukui on its nuclear disaster response policies and to set up procedures to accept evacuees from Fukui in a nuclear contingency.
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