Geriatric care in China gets a boost from the Government

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China to strengthen elderly care system
Beijing, Aug 17 : Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has said that greater reforms and innovation will be used to build a diversified nationwide elderly care service system by 2020 in the country.

Speaking at an executive meeting of the State Council, Li said that a sound elderly care service industry can help to create jobs and facilitate economic restructuring, Xinhua reported on Friday.

Elderly care service facilities should be built in new communities and updated in the old ones, the state council said, adding that free or inexpensive services should be provided to the disadvantaged elderly people, especially in the rural areas.

The Chinese premier said more innovative elderly care service models should be explored, including those that involve cooperation with the health care, insurance, education and tourism industries.

Stating non-government actors and foreign investors should be encouraged to support the development of the sector, Li said. He added that governments at all levels should provide fiscal and administrative support for the sector and facilitate the training of elderly care professionals.

China has a rapidly aging society and the largest population of elderly people in the world, reaching almost 200 million.

There are only 21.5 beds available for every 1,000 elderly people in Chinese nursing homes, according to the Social Development Department of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China's top economic planner.

IANS

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