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China strengthens compliance supervision of elderly care services

Updated: Dec 30,2020 07:00    Xinhua

BEIJING — Chinese civil affairs authorities will strengthen vocational and legal education for nursing staff to eliminate maltreatment in elderly care institutions in the country, a senior official said on Dec 29.

Gao Xiaobing, vice-minister of civil affairs, made the remarks at a policy briefing on guidelines for establishing and improving a comprehensive supervision system for elderly care services to boost the sector's high-quality development.

"We exercise zero tolerance for a few nursing staff cheating and maltreating the elderly in a few senior care institutions," Gao said, pledging punishments for those people and institutions guilty of such offenses, including denying them access to the industry.

China rolled out its first set of mandatory national standards on senior care in January to provide bottom-line requirements for service quality within the sector. It will come into effect in January 2022, said Yu Jianliang, an official with the civil affairs ministry.

"All elderly care institutions should rectify their shortcomings according to the mandatory standards during the two-year transition period. Those who fail to meet the standards will be banned," said Yu.

The State Administration for Market Regulation has released 12 national standards for elderly care services, covering areas including daycare in communities and tourism for the seniors, said Chen Hongjun, an official with the administration. He added that elderly care institutions are encouraged to participate in formulating competitive standards.

"So far, 85 nursing institutions have disclosed 851 standards that they implement," Chen noted.

China revised its Law on the Protection of the Rights and Interests of the Elderly in 2018. It allows elderly care institutions to start operating after filing with civil affairs departments of the governments at or above county levels.

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