Hidehisa Otsuji was the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare in the Cabinet of Junichirō Koizumi.
He was born in Kaseda City in Kagoshima Prefecture on the island of Kyūshū. His father was killed in World War II in fighting near the Solomon Islands. Otsuji briefly attended the National Defense Academy but dropped out in 1961 after his mother died.
Studied, National Defense Academy, Japan, 1961. Studied, Tokyo University, 1971.
From his own account, Otsuji was unhappy with university education. Reflecting on his youth as en elderly politician, he noted the social unrest at the time and protests against the government of Prime Minister Kishi, and said that lectures were rarely held and there was no worthwhile education to be had. Instead, he took the time to travel the world and visited close to 80 countries over a period of five years.
In 1971 he returned to Japan and officially withdrew from Tokyo University and returned to Kagoshima. He was elected to the Kagoshima Prefectural Assembly in 1979. He was defeated in his run for the House of Representatives in 1986 but was elected to the House of Councillors in 1989.
He served as Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Management and Coordination in 1992 and became Vice Minister for Okinawa Development in 1994. He was selected to served as Vice Minister of Financial Affairs in 2003 in the cabinet of Prime Minister Junichirō Koizumi and became the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare in 2004. Otsuji is affiliated to the openly revisionist organization Nippon Kaigi.
Otsuji is also the author of several books, including "Africa Travel Diary" and "Going to Bokemon World." "Bokemon" is a word from the Kagoshima dialect of Japanese meaning "recklessly strong".