Japan’s looming population crisis combines lots of old people with not many workers. Many of the potential nurses to tend to said old people happen to be from neighbouring Asian countries. Not so fast! What about robots?!
Japan is a very racially homogenous society, where immigration is frowned upon and genetic purity is seen as a good thing. And with the birthrate slowed, they’re moving towards an era where a full half of the population will be over 65. That means they’ll need one of two things to take care of that aging population: foreign nurses or robot nurses. Guess which option seems more reasonable to them?
Yes, robotic fucking nurses. The problem? They aren’t even close to creating a robot that could replace a trained human nurse. Have you seen the current crop of robots? They may have realistic latex skin, but I still wouldn’t trust a robot with a task more important than vacuuming my bedroom while I’m out.
The robot idea is a neat one, but it’s just that: an idea. Meanwhile, hospitals are going to be shut down because of a lack of staff and people are going to be left without vital medical care.
Sooner or later, they’re going to need to allow immigrants from neighbouring Asian countries to enter the country and work in much greater numbers in order to make up from the soon-to-be greatly diminished Japanese workforce. And not just to build goddamned robots. [BBC]