Business / Insurance market

China to better supervise medical insurance funds

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-05-25 15:57

BEIJING - Vice-Minister of Health Liu Qian said more efforts will be made to supervise funding for rural cooperative medical insurance programs.

The Ministry of Health will cooperate with the Ministry of Finance to conduct routine checks over the management of the funds, Liu said in a Friday interview.

The ministry will also work with auditing authorities to audit the funds, he said.

Liu also pledged to implement measures to make funding management more transparent.

According to Liu, the annual government subsidy for each rural resident in the rural cooperative medical insurance program was raised from 20 yuan ($3.16) in 2003 to 200 yuan last year. The subsidy will be raised to 240 yuan this year.

Rural residents will pay a premium of 60 yuan per person themselves, with the total per-capita premium reaching 300 yuan, Liu said.

Civil affairs authorities will give allowances for rural residents who have "realistic difficulties" in making their payments to ensure that no one is left behind, Liu said.

Rural cooperative medical insurance will cover about 75 percent of inpatient expenses and coverage for outpatient costs will be boosted, the vice minister said.

The government will also speed up the development of special programs for patients with serious diseases, including pediatric acute leukemia, congenital heart disease, cervical cancer, breast cancer and severe mental illnesses.

The government will enlist the help of commercial insurance agencies in its rural medical insurance program and make efforts to control medical costs, Liu said.

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