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The evolution of health policy in China and internal migrants: Continuity, change, and current implementation challenges

Yunting Zheng, Ying Ji, Chun Chang and Marco Liverani

Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, 2020, vol. 7, issue 1, 81-94

Abstract: Rural–urban migration is a defining feature of socio‐economic change in contemporary China. It is estimated that internal migrants in China account for 20% of its population of 1.39 billion, providing manpower to the expanding urban industries. Yet internal migrants have long faced barriers to accessing health and other social services in urban destinations, and the migration process may expose them to novel health risks and inequities. Based on the analysis of policy documents and associated material, this article reviews the historical development of health policy in China in relation to internal migrants, identifying elements of continuity and change in the policy agenda and the ways in which migrants have been framed in policy formulations. Against this background, remaining gaps in the current policy framework and implementation challenges are discussed.

Date: 2020
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