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Govt policy moves from past week

Wang Qingyun
Updated: Sep 15,2020 07:09 AM    China Daily

Counseling for former COVID-19 patients

A plan to help local health authorities provide psychological counseling services to people who have recovered from COVID-19 has been issued by the National Health Commission.

Local authorities should organize teams consisting of social workers, volunteers and therapists to visit such people, find out about their health and financial conditions and help them solve their problems, the plan said.

The authorities should promote knowledge about COVID-19 through local news outlets to reduce discrimination against former patients, the plan, released on Sept 10, said.

It asked local health authorities to set up a database that includes such people's medical records, while emphasizing the importance of protecting their privacy.

The plan also suggested mental health hospitals help community health centers offer mental health assessments for patients who have returned home from hospital, based on informed consent and voluntary participation.

Each county or district should have a team that offers psychological counseling to former patients and their family members, according to their wishes, and the team should pay at least one follow-up visit every six months to record their mental health conditions, according to the plan.

The team should pay special attention to people who exhibit mental health problems and provide one-on-one intervention, and promptly transfer those with serious problems or strong suicidal tendencies to hospitals.

The plan also called for local authorities to provide counseling through hotlines or the internet to allow more people to access psychological intervention services.

Reforms to improve business environment

The State Council has detailed multiple reform measures to improve the business environment and invigorate the market.

While China's business environment has seen remarkable progress in recent years, operational barriers still exist, according to a circular released by the Cabinet last week that listed reforms in four areas to spur business vitality.

China will push for the full adoption of online procedures for starting a business in order to reduce the time required for setting up an enterprise to no more than four working days, the circular said.

It also pledged to simplify regulations and approval procedures, while calling for new breakthroughs in the business registration system.

The power of approval for businesses related to five product categories, including steel bars for construction purposes, will be decentralized to provincial-level market regulators.