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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Health system to get shot in the arm

By Shan Juan (China Daily)

08:31, November 30, 2011

BEIJING - China is set to progressively promote commercial health insurance programs as the country appears to be more determined to tap all resources available to strive for universal and affordable healthcare for its citizens.

Vice-Premier Li Keqiang made the remarks on Tuesday while addressing a State Council meeting on deepening the ongoing healthcare reform in China.

To date, more than 1.28 billion Chinese people are covered by basic medical insurance programs run by the government, accounting for nearly 96 percent of the population, according to the latest statistics from the Ministry of Health.

Recognizing that the current round of healthcare reform has made huge progress, Li called for deepening healthcare reform in the coming five years to build a system that benefits the entire population.

"As the healthcare reform deepens, more tough challenges and difficulties can be expected. But the reform has to be continued to improve health equality and to better meet rising healthcare demands from the public," he said.

In April 2009, the central government accelerated its healthcare reform by unveiling a three-year roadmap with an investment of at least 850 billion yuan ($133 billion) to provide fair, affordable and quality healthcare services for the public.

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