A government advisory panel has proposed hikes to hospital visit fees paid by outpatients for their initial and follow-up medical examinations in order to increase the salaries of health care workers.

The Central Social Insurance Medical Council adopted the proposal Wednesday, revising medical fees paid to hospitals and clinics for fiscal 2024, including hikes to fees for hospital outpatient visits. The proposal was submitted to health minister Keizo Takemi the same day.

In order to increase pay for young doctors, nursing staff and pharmacists, basic hospitalization fees will be raised in addition to hospital outpatient visit fees. Also proposed were special additional fees with the sole purpose of supporting wage hikes for staff.