CHINA – Jiangsu’s public hospitals have implemented a new policy aimed at  diminishing patient wait times within the hospital in an effort to enhance patient care and convenience. 

This policy echoes China’s steadfast commitment to refining services in public healthcare institutions, prioritizing the reduction of wait times and accommodating the diverse needs of patients.

In the past, protracted wait times for registration, medical examinations, and settling hospital bills were perennial grievances among patients in Chinese hospitals. 

However, recent reforms have ushered in a significant transformation.

According to the National Health Commission (NHC), over 5,500 comprehensive hospitals at the second grade and above now offer “one-stop” services, empowering 77.7 percent of hospitalized patients to settle their bills on discharge day. 

In Zhoukou, Central China’s Henan Province, Mayor Ji Jianjun noted that inpatients spend merely three to five minutes completing discharge procedures.

Moreover, 88.2 percent of public hospitals at the second grade and above have achieved mutual recognition of medical examination results, curbing the necessity for redundant tests across different facilities.

The First Affiliated Hospital under Zhejiang University School of Medicine epitomizes this efficiency.

 Patients there exclusively use their mobile phones for all services, resulting in an average 90 percent reduction in wait times, as attested by Liang Tingbo, the hospital’s Party chief.

 Additionally, the hospital has refined sickbed management, slashing the average wait time for hospitalization from 10 days to 3.5 days and reducing the average hospital stay to 4.7 days.

Public hospital reforms extend beyond efficiency enhancements to cater to the increasingly diverse needs of patients. 

According to the NHC, more than 2,800 public hospitals in second grade and above now offer an array of new outpatient services, including anesthesia, pain management, and health management.

For homebound patients, medical institutions extend access to medical and nursing services. 

In Zhoukou, 182 medical institutions have been delivering medical services to households since July of the preceding year, benefiting over 20,000 individuals.

According to NHC data, over 3,000 medical institutions leverage the internet to offer online medical and nursing services for those unable to visit in person.

In response to the growing demand for elderly care, nursing homes in Beijing, Shandong, and Jiangsu have risen, alongside providing in-home nursing services for elderly citizens.

The NHC, in collaboration with relevant departments, is drafting guidelines aimed at enhancing nurses’ skills and optimizing nursing services to cultivate a more compassionate patient care experience, as affirmed by Xing Ruoqi, an official at the NHC’s healthcare reform department.

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