About 70,000 orphans in Sichuan and Guangdong provinces will receive free health insurance effective from Monday.
About 30,000 of them are from south China's Guangdong Province, who will benefit from the program for the first time, said Hu Huijuan, a member of the China Children Insurance Foundation under the China Children and Teenagers' Foundation on Saturday.
The rest are from southwest China's Sichuan Province, where the program is in place for a sixth consecutive year.
The insurance aims to help children get timely economic support when they face serious diseases, Hu said.
Each insured child is covered for 100,000 yuan (16,000 U.S. dollars) at a premium of 50 yuan a year to cover the cost of treating 12 critical illnesses, including malignant tumors and conditions requiring organ or stem cell transplants, she said.
The program was launched in 2009. China has more than 570,000 registered orphans. However, the actual number is believed to be much higher, due to oversights in recording orphans in rural areas and when they move to cities with migrant-worker relatives.