Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
HCM City (VNA) – Vietnam recorded an increasing third-child birthrate over the last five years, especially in well-to-do families, heard a seminar in Ho Chi Minh City on July 29.

The event, hosted by the General Department of Population and Family Planning under the Ministry of Public Health, aimed to realise targets set by the Government to decrease the birthrate and improve the population quality in 2016.

According to reports from the department, up to 219,976 newborns were reported in the first quarter of this year, up 4.7 percent year-on-year. The third-child birthrate increased 3.7 percent in the period.

In the first six months of this year, the birthrate was up 9.9 percent, while the third-child birthrate was 7.5 percent against the same period last year.

Deputy Director of the general department Le Canh Nhac mentioned difficulties facing the population sector, including increased rate of third-child birth, reduction of the use of contraception , gender imbalance at birth and limitations in prenatal and newborn screening.

Vietnam aims to maintain a replacement fertility rate instead of maintaining a reasonably low birth rate, and this puts more pressure on the sector, Nhac said.

The department and localities have taken many measures, focusing on expanding pre-natal and newborn screening, training human resources serving prenatal and newborn screening and raising public awareness of the issues, he noted.

Localities and the general department’s chapters in provinces and cities nationwide were urged to devise a plan towards tackling gender imbalance at birth and maintaining a reasonable birthrate.-VNA