China's evolving health care market: How doctors feel and what they think

Meng Kin Lim, Hui Yang, Tuohong Zhang, Zijun Zhou, Wen Feng, Yude Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reports on a questionnaire survey and 12 focus groups conducted among doctors in three provinces of China, namely Guangdong, Shanxi, and Sichuan. The survey (N=720) and focus group participants were drawn from both rural and urban areas, as well as public and private sectors, in equal numbers The aim was to gauge how Chinese doctors feel about themselves and what they think of the Chinese health care system. We found low satisfaction levels with own income (8%), job (27%), skill (30%), and other important aspects of their professional life. The health care system received only 32% approval rating. Quality of care and patient safety issues were major concerns, especially in the growing but poorly regulated private sector. The public sector came under criticism for its high fees and bad service quality. The feedback point to the need for an appropriate regulatory framework to guide the development of China's evolving health care market. A revitalized medical profession that is fully engaged in the reform process could also significantly impact the success of ongoing health care reform efforts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-337
Number of pages9
JournalHealth Policy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • China
  • Doctors' satisfaction
  • Health care reform
  • Private health care

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