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Falling Birthrate Leads to Shortage of Ob-Gyns, Kindergartens

2019/08/11 | 148 views | Permalink | Source

As Korea's birthrate has dropped to one of the world's lowest, obstetric clinics and kindergartens are disappearing at a rapid pace as well.

According to a report released by the Ministry of Health and Welfare on Wednesday, the total number of kindergartens nationwide at the end of last year was 39,171, down from 43,742 in 2014. And the figure keeps shrinking to stand at 37,589 kindergartens in June this year, a decrease of over 1,500 in just six months.

Obstetric clinics have also been hit hard. According to the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service, the number of obstetric clinics nationwide dropped from 1,628 in 2009 to 1,311 last year.

"With a decline in the number of newborns, childcare infrastructure is also shrinking", said Lee Sam-sik at Hanyang University. "The lack of kindergartens and pediatric and obstetric clinics will cause the already record-low birthdate to fall even more", he added.

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