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Calif Med. 1967 Oct;107(4):334-7.

Legalized abortion in Japan.

Abstract

The enactment of the Eugenic Protection Act in Japan was followed by many changes. The population explosion was stemmed, the birth rate was halved, and while the marriage rate remained steady the divorce rate declined. The annual total of abortions increased until 1955 and then slowly declined. The highest incidence of abortions in families is in the 30 to 34 age group when there are four children in the family. As elsewhere abortion in advanced stages of pregnancy is associated with high morbidity and mortality. There is little consensus as to the number of criminal abortions. Reasons for criminal abortions can be found in the legal restrictions concerning abortion: Licensing of the abortionist, certification of hospitals, taxation of operations and the requirement that abortion be reported. Other factors are price competition and the patient's desire for secrecy. Contraception is relatively ineffective as a birth control method in Japan. Oral contraceptives are not yet government approved. In 1958 alone 1.1 per cent of married women were sterilized and the incidence of sterilization was increasing.

PMID:
6062283
PMCID:
PMC1502774
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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