To avoid an oversupply of doctors and dentists in the country, the Education Ministry is considering cutting the number of student admissions to medical and dental schools at Japanese universities by about 200 over the next few years, beginning next spring, it was learned Wednesday.
Such a move, if finalized, will be the first one in more than a decade.
The move reflects the Health and Welfare Ministry’s concern that there will be too many doctors and dentists for jobs in the near future. The ministry estimates some 14,000 doctors and more than 9,000 dentists will be jobless by 2025.
Alarmed by the situation, the ministry said in June that the number of people allowed to become doctors should be cut to a rate of about 7,000 per year by fiscal 2020. They also said the rate for dentists in the near future should be reduced by 10 percent from the current level.
The Education Ministry will decide later this month how many seats will be cut and from which national universities. Public and private universities will be asked to follow suit.
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