Beijing’s decision to allow all married couples to have two children is driving a surge in demand for fertility treatment among older women, putting heavy pressure on clinics and breaking down past sensitivities, and even shame, about the issue.
The rise in in-vitro fertilization points to the deferred dreams of many parents who long wanted a second child, but were prevented by a strict population control policy in place for more than 30 years.
Dr Liu Jiaen, who runs a private hospital in Beijing treating infertility through IVF, in which an egg and sperm are combined in a laboratory dish and the resulting embryo transferred to a woman’s uterus.
Liu estimated that the numbers of women coming to him for IVF had risen by 20 per cent since the relaxation of the policy, which came into effect at the start of the year. Before, the average age of his patients was about 35. Now most of them were older than 40 and some of the women were fast approaching 50, he said.
In 2014, Nextbigfuture predicted that China’s One child policy would be lifted. Women in China who are now older were banned from having babies but now will be allowed to have children. Many chinese woman would not be able to conceive naturally and would use IVF. In 2014, NBF saw IVF going to 2-8 million per year over the next 10 years.
Over the past two decades, IVF technology has developed rapidly in China, where about 10 per cent of couples are estimated to need the procedure to conceive. In 2014, 700,000 women had IVF treatments, according to the health commission’s Women’s and Children’s Department, which said in a statement that demand for all types of fertility treatment had risen following the policy relaxation, including the use of traditional Chinese medicine.
The second part of the NBF prediction is that women in China using IVF would begin to use embryo selection. Embryo selection based upon intelligence for invitro fertilized (IVF) babies is becoming possible and we are on the cusp of genetic engineering. IVF babies are more easily embryo selected and accessible for genetic modification. This would provide an economic boost to China in 20-30 years and the beginnings of a significant societal shift.
The maximum amount of IQ gain if screening allowed for optimal selection
The National Health and Family Planning Commission said in November, 2015 that 90 million women would become eligible to have a second child following the policy change. Authorities expect that will add 30 million people to the country’s labour force by 2050.
SOURCES – South China Morning Post
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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