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ASIA-PACIFIC POPIN BULLETIN. 1991 Jun; 3(2):7-11.George Walmsley, UNFPA country director for the Philippines, discusses demographic and economic conditions in the Philippines, and present plans to revitalize the national population program after 20 years of only modest achievements. The Philippines is a rapidly growing country with much poverty, unemployment and underemployment, uneven population distribution, and a large, highly dependent segment of children and youths under age 15. Initial thrusts of the population program were in favor of fertility reduction, ultimately changing to adopt a perspective more attuned to promoting overall family welfare. Concurrent with this change also came a shift from a clinic-based to community-based approach. Fertility declines have nonetheless grown weaker over the past 8-10 years. A large gap exists between family planning knowledge and practice, with contraceptive prevalence rates declining from 45% in 1986 to 36% in 1988. Behind this lackluster performance are a lack of consistent political support, discontinuities in program implementation, a lack of coordination among participating agencies, and obstacles to program implementation at the field level. The present government considers the revitalization of this program a priority concern. Mr. Walmsley discusses UNFPA's definition of a priority country, and what that means for the Philippines in terms of resources nd future activities. He further responds to questions about the expected effect of the Catholic church upon program implementation and success, non-governmental organization involvement, the role of information and information systems in the program, the relationship between population, environment and sustainable development, and the status of women and its effect on population.
INTEGRATION. 1989 Dec; (22):24-7.In the last 20 years the world's population has grown by 1.6 billion and has reached 5.2 billion. The gap in population growth between developing and developed areas will increase in the next decade: at present 77% of the earth's population lives in developing countries. A major demographic factor is the future of urban growth where the number of cities over 5 million will increase to 45 by the end of the century. The aging of the population is another demographic factor found worldwide. By the year 2000, 13% of the population will be over 60: 70% of those will be in developed areas. Most developing countries now have a population policy. The total fertility rate has dropped more than 20% in developing countries since 1970. The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has devoted a recent report to the purpose of investing in women. The key to the future of mankind is related directly to the extent that women can make decisions affecting their lives. It is apparent that the effects of resource misuse, environmental damage, and population growth crosses national borders indiscriminately. The key elements to a new approach of development are population, environment, and the role and status of women. In the development of national conservation policies and in the implementing a world strategy, the population environmental relationship will need to be addressed. Since women are directly and indirectly related to the environment by the tasks they perform they are also the most directly effected by environmental degradation. A new approach is needed for balanced development that recognized social, economic, population and environmental relationships. A realistic set of goals for population policy would be to slow the rapid population growth, decrease infant, child and maternal mortality, raise the status of women, and regulate the migration and distribution of population.
New York, New York, UNFPA, 1983. 39 p. (Report No. 52)Samoa's major population problem is a high rate of natural population increase. The crude birth rate from 1971-1976 is estimated at 37.4/1000. The total fertility rate was estimated at 6.7 for the same period. Emigration has compensated for much of the natural population increase. The infant mortality rate is low; life expectancy is 64.3 years for females and 61 for males. A maternal and child health program with integrated child-spacing services is government supported. In 1979, 13% of all women of reproductive age used contraception. Samoa's 4th Five-Year National Devlopment Plan (1980-1984) includes a review of population trends. There is a need to develop a broad-based population policy. The Mission recommends that, to assist in the formulation and implementation of this policy, a high-level government office be appointed to coordinate population efforts, and a post of Population Coordinator created. Considerable data exist, although more information on specific development-related topics would be helpful. The Mission recommends that a survey unit should be set up. Service delivery of the maternal and child health and family planning activities should be improved. Traditional village social institutions should be included. The government plans to integrate population and family life education into the educational system through teacher training and curriculum development. Assistance in the produciton of materials would be helpful. The Mission recommends that women's activities be better coordinated.
New York, New York, UNFPA, 1983. 59 p. (Report No. 53)An estimated 53.7 million people lived in Vietnam in 1980. The government wants to lower the rate of population growth as soon as possible. Its short-term goal, to lower the annual rate to 1.7% by 1986, is to be met through the national family planning program. The government wishes to get more married women in the reproductive age group to use contraception--from 20% at present to 50-65% by the year 2000. 2nd major population goal is resettle 10 million people from the northern to the southern part of the country by the end of the century. Efforts should be made to improve the vital registration system. Population research is concentrated in the State Planning Committee, the research arms of various ministries, and in Government research agencies. This research needs to be strengthened. Overseas training and study tours should be provided for strengthening staff capabilities. Assistance should be provided for the government's primary health care approach with emphasis on community participation. Urgently needed are essential drugs and contraceptives--especially condoms. A factory for testing and packing condoms should be built, once the quality of locally produced latex improves. The Mission recommends that a systematic manpower development analysis be undertaken to aid the government in determining training needs of health personnel; their curricula should include more population and family planning content, and motivational and communication techniques. An audiovisual (AV) center was established in Hanoi; however the information, education, and communication (IEC) program needs strenthening. Aid should also be given for low-cost media production in the AV subcenter being started in Ho Chi Minh City. Perservice training of primary and secondary teachers will include population education. Women's activities should be promoted.