For the 52nd consecutive year, Japan has a record number of centenarians

A record 90,526 Japanese had celebrated their 100th birthday or older as of September 15, the Health Ministry reported on September 16.

Japan has now marked a record number of centenarians for the 52nd consecutive year.

About 89%, or 80,161, of those 100 or older as of September 15 were women. There were 4,016 more centenarians this year than last year.

They were only 153 in 1963, the year of the promulgation of the law on the social protection of the elderly.

The number, however, exceeded 10,000 in 1998 and, after a continuous increase each year, it has increased 1.8 times over the past 10 years.

This year, Shimane Prefecture again had the highest proportion of centenarians per capita, a status it has maintained for 10 years.

The prefecture had 142.41 centenarians per 100,000 population, followed by Kochi prefecture at 136.84 and Tottori prefecture at 132.60.

Saitama Prefecture reported the lowest proportion of centenarians per population for the 33rd consecutive year.

It had only 43.62 inhabitants aged 100 or over per 100,000 inhabitants as of September 15.

The oldest person in Japan is Fusa Tatsumi, 115, who resides in Kashiwara, Osaka Prefecture.

The oldest man is Shigeru Nakamura, 111, who lives in Jinsekikogen, Hiroshima prefecture.

As of September 1, it was estimated that 45,141 people would turn 100 during that fiscal year. This is 1,508 more than last year’s estimate.

In Japan, September 15 is designated as “Day of the Elderly” by the revised Law on Welfare of the Elderly.

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