Premarital checkups rise again after decline
Last year, 59.7 percent of all couples who married in China had a premarital checkup, with diseases spotted in more than 930,000 people that could affect birth, says the National Health and Family Planning Commission, China’s top health authority. The increase is due to a series of measures taken in recent years to encourage the exams as a way to help reduce birth defects. Premarital checkup rates declined sharply in China once the exams became voluntary with the adoption of a new regulation in 2003. The rate declined to 2.9 percent in 2005 and rebounded to 41 percent in 2011 and to 48.4 percent in 2012, figures previously released by the commission show.