On 31 July, State Secretary Böhning welcomed a delegation from the Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs headed by Deputy Minister Goa Xiaobing at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. The talks centred on the challenges brought about by demographic change in both countries with a particular focus on long-term care policies.
State Secretary Böhning stressed the importance of better working conditions in order to attract more people in Germany to a career in long-term care and to improve its quality. State Secretary Böhning noted:
Quality long-term care policies include adequate wages for long-term care professionals. He added that as part of the concerted action on long-term care implemented by the Federal Ministry of Health, the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth and the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, his ministry was especially working on increasing collective bargaining coverage in the long-term care sector in an effort to counter the shortage of skilled workers. Recruiting skilled workers from abroad for the long-term care sector was another important aspect.
The Chinese government plans to introduce standardised long-term care insurance over the next few years. Since 2016, it has been implementing pilot programmes in 16 provinces. Senior citizens can apply for these long-term care benefits provided they have health insurance coverage. In this context, the Chinese delegation was especially interested in Germany’s long-term care policies, including uniform quality standards for long-term care services, the monitoring of these standards, the funding of long-term care services and the licensing of service providers. State Secretary Böhning encouraged Deputy Minister Goa to also discuss these questions with the Federal Ministry of Health and the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth and stressed the readiness of his ministry to continue the dialogue with the Ministry of Civil Affairs.