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[Editorial] Reconciling city and country: China’s lessons for a divided world

On Jan 12, China took an important step towards health equity. The State Council announced that two of China’s three segmented health insurance schemes would merge by the end of the year. This welcome decision addresses a major cause of inequality in China: the rural–urban divide that separates the socioeconomically privileged east and southeast of the country from the less developed west and far north. Harmonising rural and urban insurance schemes is essential to achieve the country’s goal of truly universal health coverage by 2020.