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'China requires better family planning over migration'

China,Health/Medicine, Sat, 14 Apr 2012 IANS

Beijing, April 14 (IANS) Chinese authorities believe their country requires a better family planning due to a consistent rise in migrants' population.


A senior family planning official has admitted that China's family planning service, which effectively implemented the one-child policy over three decades in the country, is now facing challenges from the increasing migrant population, Xinhua reported.


According to Wang Xia, minister in charge of the State Population and Family Planning Commission, last year the number of married women of childbearing age in the country's migrant population totalled 67 million; about 25 percent of the national figure.


Over 60 percent of the mothers in this migrant population gave birth to their children at places far away from where they had their household registrations, said Wang.


The rules require every Chinese national must be registered in a household. It enables them to have a household certificate, or hukou, which is closely related to social security and public services.


Expectant mothers, living away from their household registration locations, can not receive healthcare and birth control facilities covered under medical insurance programme, or other services offered by local governments.


Also, the family planning authorities aren't always able to monitor if such women give birth to more than one child.


Over the next 20 years, more than 300 million rural residents are expected to move into cities and it remains a big problem how to incorporate them into the public services system, said Wang.


This year, the commission will work to improve the cooperation between rural and urban areas so as to better monitor the flow of the migrant population and reach as many migrant couples as possible for family planning education, he said.


China presently has about 230 million migrants.


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