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The rapid progress made by medical science has without doubt served to mitigate physical and mental pains of those suffering from illnesses, and to extend the span of healthy life. Indeed, great strides have been made during the past two to three decades in pharmaceuticals, medical equipment and techniques for surgical operations in the prevention and cure of cancer, heart diseases and cerebral vascular illnesses, which together account for nearly 60 percent of the causes of death in Japan.

Those in the age bracket from 15 to 64, known as the productive age population, can now rest assured of performing their duties and enjoying their lives with no less physical and mental capabilities than their able-bodied colleagues even if they suffer from serious illnesses or accident-related injuries, as long as they receive proper medical treatment and are cared for under appropriate convalescent programs.

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