Facebook Twitter 新浪微博 google plus Instagram YouTube Friday, Dec. 25, 2015

Chinese lawmakers demand better care for elderly

(Xinhua)    20:57, December 25, 2015

BEIJING, Dec. 25 -- Chinese lawmakers on Friday called on authorities to allow more social investment in care for the elderly.

In discussions held Friday afternoon, legislators noted that most communities still lack adequate facilities for the old, and those which do exist are unprofessional or out-of-date.

Of the 212 million elderly people in China, about 90 percent live at home, with only about three percent in nursing homes. The rest rely on community-based day care services, said lawmaker Wang Naikun.

"While home-based care needs to be improved, the government should also step up community services," Wang said, suggesting that authorities provide subsidies and low-interest loans for private care centers.

China has well over 200 million people aged 60 or above, more than 15 percent of the population, and the figure is expected to reach 243 million by 2020. Geriatric care lags far behind demand and varies greatly between regions.

By the end of 2014, China had 5.51 million nursing beds for the elderly, around 26 beds for every 1,000 old people.

Wang Fengchao, another lawmaker, said one reason behind the shortage is the lack of professionals in the sector, and urged the government to step up training and support for the profession, and provide more incentives for college graduates to enter the field.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Yuan Can,Bianji)

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