The Washington Post reports:
"China's health-care system is in disarray, a side effect of the market
reforms that have spurred private enterprise and rapid growth since 1980. Before
then, state-owned companies offered cradle-to-grave care, part of a system
based on danwei, or work units, that provided health, education, pensions and
other benefits. But as the economy has grown more diverse, an increasing number
of Chinese have had to fend for themselves, with only a porous government
insurance program to help."
Like the U.S., China is trying to
fix its ailing health care system. "Over the past five years, the
government has tried to provide coverage to more of its 1.4 billion people. But
even people covered by a minimal health insurance program are often left with
big hospital bills and must pay for most outpatient services and medication.
More than 300 million people do not have any health insurance."
In addition, "the gap in the quality of care has
been steadily growing, too. Peking University People's Hospital, for example,
has computerized charts, GE scanners, top-flight doctors and a deluxe ward
where the wealthy can pay extra for private suites. But community clinics in
most cities or rural areas tend to be understaffed and poorly equipped"
Source: Kaiser Health News