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Suggestions on Improving Maternity Insurance System(No.44, 2016)


By Zhang Bingzi, Research Department of Social Development, DRC

Research Report No 44, 2016 (Total NO 4927) 2016-4-5

Abstract: The major function of maternity insurance system is to reduce the economic burden for families, avoid female workers and their employers becoming vulnerable in market competition and maintain population reproduction. The medical coverage mainly includes medical treatment during pregnancy and fertility allowance for pregnant workers and their spouses. China's maternity insurance system is faced with the problem of low coverage and weak security level. We should take into account the multiple objectives of reform, including improving the health of both mother and infant, protecting workers, especially the equal employment of female workers, reducing the burden of enterprises, and helping maintain a reasonable level of fertility rate. Therefore, the policy options are made as follows. One, maternity and health service can be provided as a free basic public product. Two, under the premise of ensuring the maternity allowance paid by the insurance fund, we could consider to combine the maternity insurance with health insurance as one payment and management mode under a modest payment standard, but the maternity insurance should be kept as an independent insurance. Three, we should normalize and extend the paid paternity leave, and make pilot practice to formulate a parental leave system. Four, we can explore the possibility of drawing up a children subsidy system.

Key words: maternity insurance, maternity and health service, parental leave