Induced abortion in Japan: a demographic analysis of its trends and causes
Ryuzaburo Sato, National Institute of Population and Social Security Research
Noriko Shiraishi, National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, Japan
Rieko Bando, National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, Japan
In Japan, the rate of induced abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-49 has dropped dramatically from 50.2 in 1955 to 10.3 in 2005. However, the causes of this change have been little studied thus far. As a first step in our statistical analysis, we analyzed the change in the rate of induced abortions in terms of changes in pregnancy rates and changes in the abortion ratio. The twin factors in the decline in abortions, namely the overall decline in pregnancy and the decline in women choosing abortions, represented a 50-50 balance between 1955 and 1975, but shifted to about 70-30 between 1975 and 2005. On this background, we discussed such changes in sexual and reproductive behavior among Japanese women as the decrease in the numbers of desired children, the spread of family planning without the pill, and the recent trend towards postponing marriage and childbearing, in conjunction with unchanging social and cultural structures against cohabitation and extramarital birth.
Presented in Poster Session 3