China to scale up malformations assist

BEIJING, March 11 (Xinhua) — The National Health Commission said Monday that financial aid will be provided to more children and minors with congenital malformations this year.

The program, first launched in 2017 to help impoverished patients, will be expanded to cover 31 provincial regions across the country, according to a circular from the commission.

Under the program, patients at or under 18 from households with economic difficulties will be eligible for subsidies, which range from 3,000 yuan (446.4 U.S. dollars) to 30,000 yuan.

Official data suggest that more than 200,000 new-borns show clinically visible defects at birth annually in China, with most being structural congenital disorders.

In contrast, a total of 15.23 million children were born in 2018.

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