As China’s 2009 healthcare reforms have not proved satisfactory, despite being backed by massive investment from the Chinese central government, the authorities have begun to allow further private investment in the healthcare market and a greater role for market forces. The business sector, especially the tech industry and venture capital, have moved fast.

Most of the major online and mobile healthcare companies in China have pocketed large amounts of funding. Chinese tech giants Tencent and Alibaba made big moves in 2014, intending to address problems surrounding access and affordability in healthcare with web and mobile products or investments. For example, Alibaba announced a “Future Hospital Plan” this May.

It is considered likely that efforts by Chinese tech companies will stimulate great changes to how Chinese patients access doctors and purchase medicines in the near future.

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Tracey Xiang

Tracey Xiang is Beijing, China-based tech writer. Reach her at traceyxiang@gmail.com