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Youths need more reproductive education: Poll

[ 2010-05-05 15:51]     字号 [] [] []  
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Youths in China are becoming more open about premarital sex, but their awareness of reproductive health and safe sex remains relatively low, the first-ever extensive nationwide survey on the subject suggests.

About 60 percent of those polled expressed a tolerance of sex before marriage and more than 22 percent had already lost their virginity, according to the survey released Tuesday.

The survey polled more than 22,000 unmarried youths aged 15 to 24 nationwide.

Nearly 70 percent of those who had been sexually active first had sex before they were 20 years old and, alarmingly, more than half of them did not use any contraceptives at the time, said the poll conducted by Peking University, the National Working Committee on Children and Women under the State Council and the United Nations Population Fund.

"Youth reproductive health remains under-addressed in China," said Professor Zheng Xiaoying with Peking University.

"They are facing rising risks like unsafe sexual behaviors, unplanned teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases like HIV/AIDS," she noted.

Besides low contraceptive use, more than 20 percent of those surveyed had more than one sexual partner in the past 12 months, with males showing a higher proportion of multiple sexual partners than females, it said.

Among females who had had sex, 20 percent had unplanned pregnancies, with 91 percent resorting to abortion.

In reality, however, single youths who are also sexually active are not well covered by government-sponsored sexual and reproductive health services like consultations, health checks and free contraceptives like condoms, complained a single man in his early 20s.

Findings from the survey echoed that sentiment.


1. How many people were polled in the survey?

2. What percentage had already lost their virginity?

3. What percentage had more than one sexual partner in the past 12 months?


1. 22,000

2. 22 percent

3. 20 percent


(中国日报网英语点津 Julie 编辑)

Youths need more reproductive education: Poll

About the broadcaster:

Youths need more reproductive education: Poll

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.