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    042471

    Fertility and family planning.

    Johnson-Acsadi G

    POPULATION BULLETIN OF THE UNITED NATIONS. 1986; (19-20):44-62.

    40 years ago, one of the 1st tasks of the United Nations (UN) Population Division was a series of pilot studies demonstrating how governments could improve knowledge of demographic levels and trends using inadequate statistics: India, the Sudan, the Philippines, and Brazil demonstrated the application of survey research to fertility analysis. Similar studies illustrated the policy-making value of census data. William Brass suggested that maternity histories be used to assess fertility change. The Division participated in the 1st national family planning (FP) programs in India, and then helped develop a standard questionnaire to serve as the basis for internationally comparable knowledge, attitude, and practice surveys and sought to promote cross-national comparative research on fertility and FP. It also developed technics for estimating fertility in the absence of adequate birth statistics, including the reverse-survival method and ways of using stable population models. Model-based estimates of fertility have been made from World Fertility Survey data. The Division has provided data and studies to measure FP program success and to serve in improving service and acceptance rates, participating in evaluations of the administration of its national FP programs in India and Pakistan, and in research on cost/benefit and cost-effectiveness calculations for fertility reduction programs. A basic component was the measurement of the impact of FP programs on fertility: the Division carried out studies to evaluate alternative measurement methods, and prepared a manual. As fertility data quality improved, the Division prepared a review of knowledge on determinants of fertility, and hypothesized that a threshold must be crossed before development leads to fertility decline. The Division now produces periodic overviews of fertility conditions and trends, and studies on world levels and condtions of fertility, and has made findings on breast feeding effects, "unmet" FP needs, and the role of type of parental union, marital disruption, and education and occupation.
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