DRG System Slow to Develop in China

Historically, multiple healthcare fee/payment systems have existed in China. While the main system has been pay-for-service, the Chinese government has started a new healthcare payment reform. In the long term, the Chinese government wants to develop a case-based system alongside other payment scenarios determined by local conditions. Thus, the Chinese government divided the case-based system into the single diagnostic case-based method and the Diagnostic Related Group method (DRG). To date, the single diagnostic care-based system is dominant and the DRG system is still in its infancy. So far, there are only 2 viable DRG systems: including the Beijing-DRG (2011) and the C-DRG system by the National Health and Family Planning Commission (2017). To succeed with DRGs in the future in China, hospital systems will need better operations, IT systems, standardized coding, a better shared information system, among others.