Romania ends compulsory childbearing

Entre Nous Cph Den. 1990 Jun;(14-15):9-10.


PIP: In 1965, the birth rate in Romania had declined to 15.6/1000 populations (from 25.6 in 1955). The importing of contraceptives was prohibited. The maternal mortality rate increased from 86 maternal deaths/100,000 live births in 1966 to 140 in 1981 and nearly 150 in 1984, when 86% of maternal deaths came from abortions. Employed women up to age 45 were asked to undergo monthly gynecological exams at their places of work. Those who did not were denied dental and medical care, social security and pensions, and the right to spend their holidays at the resort maintained by their work place. Plant employees had to achieve a state- given monthly birth quota or physicians would not receive their full monthly salaries. Demographic committees supervised mandatory quarterly pregnancy tests. Unmarried people over age 25 were assessed 10% of their monthly salary. If after 2 years of marriage there were no children, and there was no medical reason for infertility, each partner had to pay more taxes. As of January, 1990 birth information for the 1986-88 had not been published or reported to the UN. Total fertility rates have not been attained since 1983. A 30-day delay was put into effect on birth registration to avoid acknowledging neonatal mortality. This is a way to lie with statistics to reduce the infant mortality rate. Women were abandoning unwanted babies in overcrowded orphanages. However, condoms are now being imported again. Abortions are being done at about US $3.00 per procedure (compared to US $50 for an illegal abortion). 2500 abortions per week are done in 12 Bucharest hospitals. Women are still coming to hospitals for treatment of sequela of self- induced abortions. They do not know that abortion is now legal. Plans are going made for a national family planning program.

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Criminal*
  • Abortion, Induced
  • Contraception*
  • Demography
  • Developed Countries
  • Europe
  • Europe, Eastern
  • Family Planning Policy*
  • Family Planning Services
  • Legislation as Topic*
  • Maternal Mortality*
  • Mortality
  • Population
  • Population Dynamics
  • Public Policy
  • Romania