China plans to enact a mental health law in 2011, a senior lawmaker said on the sidelines of the ongoing annual parliamentary session on Thursday.
The law will highlight the government's responsibility to care for not only citizens' material well-being, but also their mental health, said Xin Chunying, vice director of the Commission for Legislative Affairs of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), at a press conference.
Statistics released by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention in 2009 showed that over 100 million people affected by mental illness, with 16 million listed as severely ill, in China.
Other laws the NPC Standing Committee plan to enact this year include Law on Administrative Coercion, and Law on Entry and Exit Administration.
Xin said these laws all reflect the latest social developments and, to improve its legal system, China would continue to enact new laws and regulations to address emerging social problems.
Xin said other principles to observe in improving the legal system include revising existing laws and regulations, and making them easier to be implemented by enacting supporting laws and regulations.
Laws to be revised this year include the Budget Law, Law Concerning the Prevention and Control of Occupational Diseases, Criminal Procedure Law, Civil Procedure Law, among others, according to Xin.
(Xinhua News Agency March 10, 2011)