Eco-business / Social Venture

August 11, 2013


One-Coin Check-Up Provider Wins Nikkei Social Initiative Award in Domestic Category

Keywords: Eco-business / Social Venture Non-manufacturing industry 

Nihon Keizai Shinbun (Nikkei), a leading business daily in Japan, held an award ceremony, on May 23, 2013, of its Nikkei Social Initiative Awards that recognizes pioneering projects in the field of social business that addresses various social issues by using business methods. The award in the
domestic category was presented to Carepro, Inc., a provider of one-coin medical examination service, which allows users to have a health check for 500 yen (about US$5.4) per item.

It is estimated that about 33 million people, primarily housewives, part-timers, and self-employed individuals, in Japan are disadvantaged in terms of access to medical examination and have not had an examination in the past 12 months or longer. Thinking that possible reasons why such a great number of people are not having a check are long waiting time, expensive fee, and few opportunities for examination, Carepro developed the one-coin service. Since the company started its business in December 2007, it has provided the service to over 120,000 people.

To offer the service at a low cost, nurses, instead of doctors, conduct medical examination. As the Medical Practitioners' Act in Japan doesn't allow blood collection without the presence of a doctor, users collect their blood by themselves with the support of nurses. The service requires neither reservation nor a health insurance card, and can give results in about five minutes. Examination items that users can choose include blood sugar level, total cholesterol, neutral fat, lung age, and bone density. The service also provides a free-of-charge mobile phone medical record, which enables users to see their past examination results on their personal computers and mobile phones.