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The Japan Medical Association, an umbrella organization of doctors nationwide, plans to urge affiliated clinics to retain the current fixed-amount billing system for elderly patients instead of adopting a new, government-approved alternative of charging patients 10 percent of the bill.

Under medical care reforms due to take effect in January, clinics with less than 20 beds must choose between the fixed system, under which outpatients aged 70 and older are required to pay 800 yen per visit with a monthly upper limit of 3,200 yen, and the new system, under which they shoulder 10 percent of the bill with a monthly ceiling of 3,000 yen.

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