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China's average life expectancy to reach 77 in 2020


12-25-2016 08:31 BJT

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Dec. 23 (english.gov.cn) -- Ma Xiaowei, deputy director of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, and Wang Hesheng, deputy director of the National Health and Family Planning Commission and director of the State Council Health Reform Office, talked about two guidelines respectively on improving healthcare and medical services during the 13th Five-Year Plan and furthering medical reform in the coming five years during the State Council policy briefing on Dec 23.

Two guidelines

Ma introduced the guideline on improving healthcare and medical services, saying that the target of the plan is to establish a basic medical system that covers all urban and rural residents by 2020 and increase life expectancy by one year based on the level from 2015.

The plan brought up 25 development indexes in seven sectors, such as health level, disease control, women and children health, medical services, family planning, medical service system and medical and health support.

The plan includes 10 major tasks, such as strengthening prevention and treatment of critical diseases, enhancing medical services for women, children and elders, promoting the development of Chinese traditional medicines and building a medical service system with information technology and technical innovation.

Wang pinpointed missions of furthering medical reform during the 13th Five-Year Plan at the meeting. The six major tasks include establishing a scientific hierarchical medical system, efficient modern hospital management system, effective medical insurance system, orderly drug supply system, strict regulatory system and sound talent and incentive mechanism, according to Wang.

Issues concerning medical and health problems were also discussed at the policy briefing, including family planning of the 13th Five-Year Plan, hierarchical medical system, population aging, coordination system of medical services, reduction of air pollution, bird flu, progress of health reform and rural medical work.

Family planning of the 13th Five-Year Plan

According to Ma, the family planning work will be carried out by comprehensively implementing the two-child policy, coordination of relevant policies and strengthening the monitoring of demographic development.

Compared with previous family planning work, which aimed to control the total population, the current two-child policy diverts the focus into optimization of population quality and structure.

Hierarchical medical system

The hierarchical medical system is a significant measure to promote supply-side structural reform of medical and health services, Wang said.

So far, the hierarchical medical system has been tested in four municipalities and 266 cities directly under the central government.

Wang said that the target is to set up a hierarchical medical system in over 85 percent of cities of the nation by 2017 and establish such systems across the whole nation by 2020.

Reduction of air pollution

During the 13th Five-Year Plan period, 126 air monitoring stations will be built across the nation to survey health impacts of air pollution on residents in different regions and relevant scientific studies will be strengthened, according to Ma.

Progress of health reform

Since 2009, the health reform has gone through three stages where efforts have been made in the basic medical insurance system, basic medicine system, grassroots medical service system, equalization of basic public health services and reform of public hospitals, hierarchical medical system, management of modern hospital, universal healthcare, medicine supply and medical regulation.

The new round of healthcare reform will bring benefits to the people as proportion of payment of medical services by individuals in all medical service expenditures has been lowered to less than 30 percent, which is the lowest level in the past 20 years.

Statistics also show that the life expectancy is on the rise. Compared with the average life expectancy of 74.83 years in 2010, such level in 2015 has been lifted to 76.34 years, with an increase of nearly 1.51 years. Furthermore, maternal and infant mortality rates have dropped dramatically, according to Wang.

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