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Every Chinese to Enjoy Medical and Health Services by 2020

All Chinese people in urban and rural areas will get pleasure from basic medical care and health services by the year 2020, Vice Minister of Health Gao Qiang said at the ongoing 17th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

On the other hand, he noted that it is not easy to achieve the target, as there will be 1.5 billion people at that time.

China has set up the world's biggest network of medical services and disease prevention, and the most advanced mechanism in reporting epidemic situation, Gao said. "At present a disease outbreak, wherever it is, can be reported to the Ministry of Health in a single day."

China started the medical service reform in the early 1990s to put an end to the system in which governments and state-run enterprises covered most medical expenses of urban Chinese. However, rural people found it rather difficult to get access to medical care.

Now medical insurance has been introduced and is promoted in urban areas, and cooperative medical care has been experimented in the countryside. In this sense, all Chinese will be able to benefit from affordable medical service.

China's rural cooperative medical insurance system, initiated in 2003 to offer farmers basic health care, has covered 720 million rural residents or 82. By the end of June this year, eight percent of the country's rural population shall be covered.

Life expectancy of Chinese people reached 73 years in 2006, doubling that in 1949 when the People's Republic of China was found.



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