China's rural nursing houses to get state funds

Updated: 2013-06-13 17:37

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BEIJING -- The government will raise 3 billion yuan ($488.3 million) in lottery funds to support the construction of 100,000 rural nursing houses over the next three years.

The nursing homes will be managed by local village committees, providing rural senior citizens with accommodation, the Ministry of Civil Affairs said Thursday.

"China has nearly 50 million rural senior citizens who are in need of physical and mental care," Vice Minister of Civil Affairs Dou Yupei said during a televised conference.

Dou said the nursing homes will help maintain and develop the rights and interests of rural senior citizens.

As of 2012, there were 33,000 institutions offering services to rural senior citizens, according to the ministry.

Vice finance minister Wang Baoan said lottery-raised funds hit 417.2 billion yuan from 1987 to 2012, with the money going to sectors ranging from medical care and poverty relief to education and social welfare.

Wang called for financial institutions at all levels to channel funds for building rural nursing homes in a timely manner, as well as create related plans that are in line with local conditions.