Child spacing and two child policy in practice in rural Vietnam: cross sectional survey

Type Journal Article - BMJ
Title Child spacing and two child policy in practice in rural Vietnam: cross sectional survey
Volume 313
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 1996
Page numbers 1113-1116
Objective-To explore the reproductive pattern
ofwomen in rural Vietnam in relation to the existing
family planning policies and laws.
Design-Cross sectional survey with questionnaires
on reproductive history.
Setting-Tien Hai, a district in Red River Delta
area, where the population density is one of the
highest in Vietnam.
Subjects-1132 women who had at least one
child under 5 years of age in April 1992.
Main outcome measures-Birth spacing and
probability of having a third child.
Results-The mean age at first birth was 22.2
years. The average spacing between the first and
the second child was 2.6 years. Mothers with a
lower educational level, farmers, and women
belonging to the Catholic religion had shorter
spacing between the first and second child and
also a higher probability ofhaving a third child. In
addition, women who had no sons or who had lost
a previous child were more likely to have a third
Conclusion-Most families do not adhere to the
official family planning policy, which was
introduced in 1988, stipulating that each couple
should have a maximum of two children with 3-5
years' spacing in between. More consideration
should be given to family planning needs and perceptions
of the population, supporting the woman
to be in control of her fertility. This may imply
improved contraceptive services and better
consideration of sex issues and cultural differences
as well as improved social support for
elderly people.

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