Business / Policy Watch

China to expand medical payment reform

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-05-16 09:13

BEIJING - China plans to expand medical payment reforms to ensure that new payment systems will be implemented throughout the country's rural areas by 2015, Minister of Health Chen Zhu announced on Tuesday.

Chen said during a video conference that the payment systems will help control medical costs, as they will result in the scrapping of the fee-for-service system and cap patients' total medical expenditures.

The current fee-for-service system is believed to have encouraged an excessive number of prescriptions and unnecessary medical examinations.

Medical payment reforms will create a portfolio of payment models, including payment based on diagnosis-related groups (DRGs), per diem payment for inpatient care and a pre-pay system for outpatient care.

In 2009, the Chinese government kicked off a new round of health care reforms, aiming to provide universal and affordable medical services to the country's 1.3 billion people.

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