|A women is receiving health check-up
Experts discussed the challenge at a recent two-day conference on obstetrics and gynecology organised by the National Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Hanoi.
The figure of 8% means that at present one million Vietnamese couples are struggling with infertility.
Some provinces and city have high rates of infertility, such as Hanoi (13%) and the central coastal province of Khanh Hoa (14%).
In addition, the rate of abortion among adolescents in Vietnam is high, and many teenagers are desperate to keep their pregnancies secret from family and friends.
This increases the risk that they will turn to unsafe or unlicenced practitioners, where one of the complications they may face is infertility. Studies show that abortions performed by doctors in safe, regulated facilities are not linked to infertility.
The latest statistics from the World Health Organisation (WHO) show that Vietnam has one of the lowest fertility rates in the Asia-Pacific region.
In the 2017-2020 period, the fertility rate of the region as a whole, including Vietnam, is predicted to drop. Infertility may be contributing to the low birth rates.
Again, WHO predicts that infertility is the third most dangerous health problem for the world in the 21st century, following cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Infertility is becoming more prevalent in Asian nations, including Vietnam.
At the conference, participants heard that the age of people suffering from infertility is gradually getting younger. The causes and solutions are complicated, putting a great deal of pressure on sufferers and their doctors.
Among the one million infertile Vietnamese couples, 50% are under the age of 30.
The National Hospital of Obstetrics and Gynecology’s Infertility Department reported that 10 years ago, the department only received two to three couples per day with problems related to infertility. In 2015, the number had increased 20 times.
A health expert on infertility said the problem could stem from a variety of stressors, depression and individuals’ anxiety.
Infertility affects the population, economy and other social indicators. Therefore, health professionals are urged to address the critical problem.