China Human Rights Net > News > Focus > China Population Day > Population Policy and Aging Population

China's achievements in public health, population control

From : Xinhuanet

BEIJING, Oct. 1, 2009 -- China, with the world's largest population, showcased in a National Day parade Thursday its achievement in population control through the family planning policy.

The achievement was displayed in a formation themed "population and health" passing through Tian'anmen Square in the morning civilian parade to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.


China had a population of 1.328 billion by the end of last year, one-fifth of the world's total, more than doubling the population of 542 million when New China was founded in 1949.


However, China would have had 400 million more than the current population if the country had not implemented the family planning policy since the 1970s by encouraging late marriage and late childbearing and limiting most urban couples to one child and most rural couples to two children.


The policy helped reduce the country's birth rate from 36 per thousand in 1949 to 12.1 per thousand in 2008.


Meanwhile, the country has been devoted to providing health care to the general public to improve people's health after the founding of the People' s Republic of China.


A basic medical care system benefiting residents in urban and rural areas has been formed, which considerably improved the health level of the Chinese people. The access to medical services is much easier now. As of the end of 2008, China had more than 300,000 health institutions nationwide with 6.98 million medical workers.


Chinese people are enjoying longer life with the average life expectancy hitting 73 years by the end of 2008, compared with 35 years in 1949. Mortality rate fell to below 7 per thousand in 2008from 20 per thousand in 1949.