China had a total of 173,300 elderly-care service institutions and facilities at the end of June and more than 140,000 were at the community level, a Chinese official said on Tuesday.

Li Banghua, a Senior Official with China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs, said this at a symposium held on coping with the ageing population.

More than half of the institutions nationwide are privately run, and in Shanghai and Beijing, privately run elderly-care institutions account for more than 80 per cent of the total, Banghua said.

China has also been working to improve the quality of elderly-care services while providing more funding.

A special campaign launched in 2017 has eliminated more than 390,000 potential hazards in the country’s nursing homes.

More than five billion yuan (about $712.26 million), in annual central government funding, has also been provided for the sector since 2016, Banghua said.

The official added that private investment from society has also been booming.

Efforts will be made to help transform the government’s role from an elderly-care service provider to a supervisor to let the market play a decisive role, according to Banghua.

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