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China's social security white paper (full text)
Updated: 2004-09-07 11:23

Strengthening Work-related Injury Prevention and Occupational Rehabilitation

The Chinese Government actively promotes prevention of work- related injuries and occupational diseases through improvement of engineering technology, publicity and education, formulation of safety regulations, implementing safety and hygiene standards, and encouraging employing units to improve production safety by manipulating their injury insurance premium rates. Following the principle of "Safety and prevention first," the government urges enterprises and employees to abide by the rules and regulations concerning work safety and hygiene, and to strictly enforce the state work safety and hygiene rules and standards, so as to prevent accidents during work, and reduce occupational hazards. The state actively explores methods of occupational rehabilitation, providing injured workers with injury recovery, psychological recovery, occupational training and employment guidance. Occupational rehabilitation centers and hospitals have been set upin some areas to help injured workers to overcome physical and mental problems, regain their health and ability to work, and return to their jobs.

V. Maternity Insurance

In 1988, the state introduced a reform of the maternity insurance system in some areas. At the end of 2003, there were 36.55 million employees covered by maternity insurance. In the year of 2003, 360,000 employees received maternity insurance benefits.

The maternity insurance system mainly covers urban enterprises and their employees, and in some places women employees of government agencies, public institutions, mass organizations and enterprises. The premiums are paid by the employers participating in the maternity insurance scheme, and should not be more than one percent of the total wage bill. Individual employees do not pay the premiums. Employers not having participated in the scheme will still be responsible for providing maternity insurance benefits. Employees giving birth to babies may enjoy a childbirth allowance for 90 days according to law. Women employees who have given birthto babies or had abortions shall maintain their original wages and positions, and get reimbursements for their medical expenses according to related regulations.

VI. Social Welfare

The Chinese Government actively promotes the development of social welfare, raising funds through various channels to provide social welfare benefits for the elderly, orphans and the disabled.

Social Welfare for the Elderly In accordance with the "Law of the People's Republic of China on the Protection of Elderly People's Rights and Interests," the state and the society have adopted measures to improve conditions for such people's livelihood, health and participation in social development. Governments at all levels include services for elderly people in their socio-economic development plans, gradually increase investments in services for elderly people, and encourage investment from all sectors of society, so as to enable such services to grow in coordination with socio-economic development. In recent years, thanks to the promotion of the socialization of social welfare undertakings, a social service system for elderly people has gradually taken shape, with state- and collective-run social welfare organizations for elderly people as the backbone, those sponsored by various social sectors as a new growth point, community welfare services for elderly people as support, and services for elderly people living at home as the basis. Today, there are 38,000 social welfare organizations of various kinds for elderly people, with 1.129 million beds, or 8.4 beds for every 1,000 people over the age of 60. In 2001, the state introduced the "Starlight Plan -- National Community Welfare Service for Elderly People." By June 2004, a total of 32,000 Starlight Homes for Elderly People had been built or rebuilt in urban and rural areas all over China, with a total investment of 13.49 billion yuan.

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