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China Shifts Family Planning Focus to Reproductive Services
The focus of China's family planning work has shifted from pure population control to providing the best reproductive services.

Experts attending the Sixth Asia-Pacific Social Science and Medicine Conference said the change was a result of the country's wider cooperation with other countries.

Since 1971 when the one-child family planning policy was drawn up, a dozen international organizations including the United Nations Population Fund, the Ford Foundation and the Population Council, have worked with the country's State Family Planning Commission and brought China abundant expertise.

Recently the concept of family planning has expanded to more than just population control. Technical services aiming to improve Chinese reproductive health and maintain individual's legal rights are widespread.

To date, some 660 counties have already joined a pilot program to shift the emphasis of their family planning work to reproductive services, covering nearly 25 percent of all Chinese counties and cities.

After three decades of effort, China has become a typical nation with a low birthrate. But given its huge base population of nearly1.3 billion, the country's family planning work is still a heavy burden.

(People's Daily October 18, 2002)

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