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Population Data of Thailand

Thailand, with its current estimated population of over 64 million, has been recognised around the world for its successful family planning programme. In only 25 years, the country moved from a pronatalist stance to a contraceptive-friendly society. The total fertility rate is at replacement level - 2.1 lifetime births per women and the contraceptive prevalence rate for modern methods among reproductive-age women is high at 70 per cent. In 1997 the government launched the National Reproductive Health Policy focusing on a wide range of issues including family planning, maternal and child health, HIV/AIDS, reproductive tract infections and cancers, sex education, adolescent reproductive health, infetility, and elderly health. The integration of family planning into the national public health service system proved to be a successufl implementation strategy.

The National Economic and Social Development Plan (2002-2006) outlines current priorities: maintaining the fertility rate at replacement level; ensuring that 80 per cent of all population age groups have good reproductive health according to established standards; and reducing rural to urban migration.

In October 2001, the government initiated a low cost Universal Health Care Policy nationwide, focusing on the 20 per cent of the population uninsured by any scheme. Low-income earners are able to pay a nominal fee per visit at government hospitals. As of January 2004, 45 million people were covered by this scheme.

There remains a considerable unmet need for family planning and other reproductive health services among single women, men, adolescents and youth, hill tribes and migrant workers, since such services have been directed at married women.

Although Thailand has demonstrated strong political commitment and promotes a mult-sectoral approach, the country faces socioeconomic and epidemiological consequences as large numbers of people are living with HIV/AIDS. Up to one million people are infected with HIV, and AIDS is a leading cause of death. Challenges for the country include reviving intensive HIV prevention efforts, providing care and support to people living with AIDS and maintaining political commitment.

Statistical Information about Population of Thailand

 

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