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The Vital Statistics System and Family Registration in Japan

Technical aspects

Takashi Nomura, M.D., M.P.H.

Vital Statistics Division

Statistics & Information Department

Minister's Secretariat

Ministry of Health and Welfare


For about fifty years before 1947, the vital statistics system of Japan had been assigned to Bureau of Statistics, Central Statistics Organization of the National Government. But from 1947, the jurisdiction of vital statistics has been transferred to the Ministry of Health and Welfare. That is reason why the data collected would be used mainly for public health activities. Since then, these raw data have been collected through the channel of public health activities.

The vital statistics system in Japan is based in the Family Registration System on 100%. Family Registration System is the important method of storing information about vital events. It is a system where the legal status of each individual are recorded. Because of its legal nature, it is under jurisdiction of the compulsory system.


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