The State Council has asked ministries and departments as well as provincial authorities across the country to promote a medical insurance program for major illnesses.
By the end by 2015, all urban and rural residents covered by basic medical insurance programs should be covered by the insurance program for major illnesses, the State Council said in the statement issued on Aug 2.
The insurance program, which is already under trial in every province, aims to offer financial assistant to urban residents who don’t have a job and people living in rural areas to treat major illnesses, so that they won’t fall into poverty due to medical cost.
Urban residents who don’t have a job and rural residents enjoy basic medical insurance programs provided by local authorities. In order to further cut these people’s medical expense, the central government has been encouraging companies to offer an insurance program to help these people cope with major illnesses that often impose huge financial burdens.
As a complement to the basic insurance programs, this program is required to cover at least 50 percent of the medical cost as incurred by treating major illnesses but falls out of the coverage of the basic insurance programs. The State Council wants the program to reimburse more as time goes by.
Local authorities should choose insurance companies to run the program through bidding. Both sides should sign a contract that is at least three-year long.
A certain amount of funds will be taken from the basic insurance programs to start and support the program. The authorities should supervise the companies strictly to make sure the program is run properly and users’ privacy is protected.
While required to run the program with only a slight profit, the insurance companies will enjoy favorable tax policies. On the other hand, they should process claims in a professional and efficient manner, and help control medical cost by working with health authorities to press ahead reimbursement based on diagnosis-related groups.
The program, the basic medical insurance programs, other medical subsidies as well as charities should interact actively and complement one another to make sure that people who are financially challenged have enough resources to cope major illnesses, said the statement.