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Health Econ. 2010 Sep;19 Suppl:159-80. doi: 10.1002/hec.1613.

Family planning and fertility decline in rural Iran: the impact of rural health clinics.

Author information

1
Department of Economics, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, USA. salehi@vt.edu

Abstract

During the first few years of the Islamic Revolution of 1979, and aided by pro-natal government policies, Iranian fertility was on the rise. In a reversal of its population policy, in 1989, the government launched an ambitious and innovative family planning program aimed at rural families. By 2005, the program had covered more than 90% of the rural population and the average number of births per rural woman had declined to replacement level from about 8 births in the mid 1980s. In this paper, we evaluate the impact of a particular feature of the program - health houses - on rural fertility, taking advantage of the variation in the timing of their construction across the country. We use three different methods to obtain a range of estimates for the impact of health houses on village-level fertility: difference-in-differences (DID), matching DID, and length of exposure. We find estimates of impact ranging from 4 to 20% of the decline in fertility during 1986-1996.

PMID:
20552711
DOI:
10.1002/hec.1613
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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