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Pension payment, healthcare needs 'will be solved'

By Shan Juan (China Daily)

Updated: 2016-03-17 02:36:53


Better healthcare

Affordable healthcare is another major concern.

As part of the ongoing healthcare reforms, direct settlement of hospital expenses for retirees in areas away from their hometowns will be realized in two years, Li said.

Currently, health insurance policies in China are restricted regionally, and many retired people find it hard to get their medical bills reimbursed if they go to hospitals outside their hometowns.

"The government is resolved to achieve national portability of medical insurance plans at a faster pace," Li said, adding that provincial-level portability will be achieved within the year.

"All the government's work aims to improve the public's well-being, so we need to cater to people's wishes for a better life as we strive for development and reform."

China has a two-tier public health insurance policy system — one for urban employees and the other for the unemployed in rural and urban areas. More than 96 percent of the population has been put under this umbrella.

Responding to complaints that the burden is too heavy for individuals and their employers to pay in to insurance plans that cover pensions, healthcare, unemployment, workplace safety and maternity, Li said, "There is still room for us to cut the ratio of contributions to these insurance plans."

An employee with a monthly salary of 8,000 yuan can only receive 5,000 yuan, with about 3,000 yuan going to the insurance plans. His employer has also to pay a proportionate amount to the plans.

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