1.2 billion Chinese now covered by medical insurance

16:51, February 15, 2011      

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Medical reforms advanced steadily with notable achievements in 2010, which meant more benefits for Chinese when they go to see doctors.

In 2010, the basic medical insurance system covering all urban and rural residents took shape and now covers more than 1.2 billion. A total of 429 million have joined medical insurance for employees and insurance for urban residents.

Authorities have basically resolved the problem of retired workers in closed or bankrupted state-owned enterprises and workers in industries that are difficult to include in the insurance system. A total of 834 million have joined the New Rural Cooperative Medical Care System (NCMS), a medical insurance scheme for villagers.

Quality of medical care has been elevated to a higher level. Government subsidy for urban residents' medical insurance and rural cooperative medical insurance has increased from 80 yuan per person per year to 120.

At the same time, the scope covered by the basic drug system has been further expanded. Over 60 percent of government-run community-level medical and health service institutions have adopted the basic drug system, which lowered the price of essential medicines by an average of 30 percent.

Construction of grassroots medical institutions has been strengthened too. The central government arranged funds in support of construction of nearly 900 county-level hospitals, 1,620 township hospitals, 1,228 urban community health service centers and 11,250 village clinics in remote regions.

Reform of public hospitals has been in full swing. A total of 1,200 Grade 3 hospitals had implemented systems for outpatient appointments and staggered clinic hours. More than 3,800 hospitals had promoted quality care service.

In December 2010, the document encouraging and guiding social capital's participation in the development of medical institutions was released, which promoted a diverse pattern for operating hospitals.

People's Daily Online


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