Nara – Bern Symposium on Elderly Societies

©Embassy of Switzerland in Japan

May 7, 2019 - May 13, 2019 Nara Prefecture

In 2018, the World Health Organization cited our two countries’ cocktails of healthy meals, well-developed health care systems, and moderate exercise as contributing factors to such impressive longevity. Aging societies, however, also come with certain challenges: how can a society sustainably ensure the same health and happiness standards to a rising senior population? Can countries learn from each other’s experience? It seems very well so, as shown by the upcoming visit of a delegation of the Swiss canton of Bern to Japan in May to meet with Nara Prefecture – whom they have known well since the two regions’ twinning in 2015.

Attended by VIPs including Ambassador Jean-François Paroz, this private event will include a performance by 30 alphorn players from all over Japan. A moving celebration of the spirit of the Red Cross movement, which unites us all Japanese and Swiss people in a special way.

The Swiss and Japanese local representatives will discuss various topics including medical care, technology, and community building, and will visit nursing homes and several medical institutions. The Science & Technology Office Tokyo is organizing the program in collaboration with the Nara Prefectural Government, and Ambassador Jean-François Paroz will naturally offer his support and attend the discussions. Although these sessions are not open to public, the exchanges that will take place might very well have positive consequences for Switzerland as well as for Japan!