Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam’s sex ratio at birth hit a record high imbalance of 115.1 boys to 100 girls in 2018, up three percentage points from 2017 and falling short of the targeted 112.8 boys to 100 girls, said a population and family planning official.
Deputy General Director of the General Office for Population and Family Planning Nguyễn Thị Ngọc Lan made the announcement at a conference on Friday to launch the health ministry’s 2019 population and family planning tasks.
Lan said the nationwide population hit 94.67 million in 2018, one million more than 2017. The total number of new-born babies hit 1.38 million. The rate of married couples using contraception hit 66.5 per cent, lower than the target of 67.4 per cent.
"Ninety-four per cent of the elderly were covered by health insurance, compared to the targeted 100 per cent. Meanwhile, only 10.3 per cent of senior citizens underwent health check-ups at least once per year," she said.
According to Lan, funding for communications campaigns on population were cut last year.
Addressing the event, Deputy Health Minister Nguyễn Viết Tiến requested an improvement of population quality and healthcare for the elderly and asked for the birth rate to be maintained and sex ration at birth imbalances to be limited.
In 2019, the sector has set the targets of a 95.7 million population, a 1.06 per cent population growth, average life expectancy of 73.6 years and a sex ratio at birth of 114 boys to 100 girls.
The rate of modern contraceptive method use should reach 68 per cent, while the rate of pre-natal testing among pregnant women is hoped to hit 45 per cent and the rate of unwanted pregnancies among young people to fall by 15 per cent.
The sector suggested that the Government should ask the Ministry of Finance to amend regulations ensuring the funding of VNĐ50,000 (US$2.1) per person per year towards population work and allowing imports of contraceptive tools which Việt Nam is not able to produce. — VNS