China to increase rural medical insurance coverage

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, August 7, 2014
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China will give all its rural residents access to medical insurance cover against serious diseases next year, health authorities said on Thursday.

By the end of May, the rural residents' major disease medicare program had been piloted in over half of China's rural county-level regions, and the government is planning to expand it nationwide in 2015, said Song Shuli, spokeswoman for the National Health and Family Planning Commission.

The coverage of medical costs under this program is about 12 percentage points higher than in the basic "new rural cooperative medical program," according to Song.

Some 300 million rural residents had joined the major disease medicare program by the end of 2013 and 1.23 million had received payments under it.

Song also said that more than 802 million people, or 90 percent of China's rural residents, have joined the new rural cooperative medical program.

Government subsidies for the program increased from the previous 240 yuan (38.9 U.S. dollars) per person to 280 yuan last year, and the program has benefited 1.94 billion people, she added.

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