English >> Channels >> China
Basic healthcare for all by 2020, govt pledges
  07:50, October 19, 2007 [Font big medium small] [BBS] [Print] [Close]
The government has formulated a framework for reforming the healthcare system and will soon present it to the people for soliciting their opinion, a senior health official said yesterday.

"All people in urban and rural areas will enjoy basic medical care and health services by 2020," Vice-Minister of Health Gao Qiang said at a joint news briefing on the sidelines of the 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.

Also present were the ministers of education, labor and social security, and civil affairs; and the vice-minister of construction.

Gao did not elaborate on the plan, but said it centers on the "coordinated and parallel" reform of the medical services, insurance and supplies systems.

"While increasing government responsibility and spending, we will also encourage greater participation of private capital from both home and abroad in the sector," he said.

Increasing public criticism of high medical costs and a string of hospital scandals have prompted the ministry to launch the reform which involves 16 ministries and commissions including the National Development and Reform Commission.

Eight organizations - the World Health Organization, McKinsey, the World Bank, the Development Research Center of the State Council and four Chinese universities - have submitted proposals and the final plan is said to be a combination of the suggestions.

The reform covers a wide range of subjects including insurance, drug manufacturing, distribution and supervision, and legislation of medical management.

"Around 1.5 billion people will benefit from the system at that time," Gao said, factoring in the expected rise in the nation's population in the coming years.

"To this end, we will have a lot of work to do. But we are confident the goal is achievable."

Medical reforms began in the early 1990s when the system under which governments and State-run enterprises covered most medical expenses of urban Chinese was dismantled.

Medical insurance now covers most urban residents but rural dwellers have found it hard to get access to healthcare.

"I want to inform you here that the government will increase subsidies for rural people in implementing the new cooperative medical scheme," Gao said.

The rural cooperative medical insurance system, initiated in 2003 to offer farmers basic healthcare, covered 720 million rural residents, or 82.8 percent of the country's rural population, by the end of June this year, according to the Ministry of Health.

At the same briefing:

Education Minister Zhou Ji said practical measures will be worked out to help poor students complete higher education.

Vice-minister of Construction Qiu Baoxing pledged that every effort will be made to stabilize the housing market and help provide affordable homes for low- and middle income families. He also said a crackdown on speculation in the housing market will continue.

Labor and Social Security Minister Tian Chengping said measures are being worked out to provide social insurance to migrant workers.

Source: China Daily
 Related News
 UK, Germany pledge to improve healthcare in developing world

>> Print this article


President Hu on national development

The 85th birthday of the Communist Party of China

16th CPC National Congress, 2002

CPC's resolute fight against corruption

Key Points of Hu Jintao's Report
·Hu Jintao charts roadmap for China: sustainable growth, greater democracy
·Hu Jintao mentions "democracy" more than 60 times in landmark report
·Hu Jintao: No tolerance to corruption
·Hu against arbitrary decision-making in the Party
·Hu Jintao calls for building harmonious world
·Hu: China to modernize army for self-defense, world peace
·Hu Jintao appeals for "peace agreement" with Taiwan
·Hu Jintao calls for enhancing "soft power" of Chinese culture
·Hu Jintao vows to "reverse growing income disparity"
·Hu Jintao vows to expand people's democracy
·Hu Jintao advocates "conservation culture" for first time in keynote political document
·Hu promises to promote more non-Communists to leading positions
·Innovation tops Hu Jintao's economic agenda
·Hu Jintao proposes Scientific Outlook on Development for tackling China's immediate woes, challenges
·Hu sets goal of quadrupling per capita GDP under environment, resource restrictions
·Hu: Scientific Outlook on Development part of theories of socialism with Chinese characteristics
·Hu highlights efforts by predecessors, vowing to carry on reform, opening up
·Hu says China experiences "extraordinary" five years of achievements, difficulties
·Hu Jintao stresses socialism with Chinese characteristics

Copyright © 1997-2007 by www.people.com.cn. all rights reserved