by Steven Ertelt
August 22, 2007
Shanghai, China (LifeNews.com) — Can’t afford to have an abortion in China? That’s no longer a problem there. Hospitals in China are making it even easier for college students and poor Chinese residents to have an abortion by allowing them to finance the abortions long-term through installment plans.
A privately owned hospital in Wuhan has initiated the trial program, which is aimed at college students with financial difficulties.
Starting in March, Wuhan Huajin Hospital, which specializes in maternity services, started the new payment plan. It allows college students and other lower-income patients to pay 30 to 50 percent of the cost of the abortion up front.
Those who get abortions then have five months to pay the rest of the bill without interest.
However, the program is not without opposition — though not because it will likely encourage more abortions in a nation where forced abortions are a significant human rights abuse.
Zhang Guozhong, the vice secretary-general of the Chinese Privately-Owned Hospital Association, told the Interfax news agency he thinks the program is unnecessary.
"Personally, I don’t approve of this initiative," he said.
Zhang believes the policy is simply an idea to help the Wuhan hospital compete in a market flooded with private medical centers that can’t draw enough patients. He also said that most young people can afford the average cost of $150 for an abortion.
Zhang Zhenyu, the marketing director of the Wuhan Huajin Hospital, told Interfax that about 100 people have taken advantage of the abortion financing program so far. Approximately 75 percent of those who get abortions at the hospital are college students.
Jin Jianqing, who works at the Ruijin Hospital, told Interfax that Chinese students are going to private medical centers for abortions rather than state-funded hospitals is that they want to keep their abortions a secret.
"The main reason that college students are rushing into privately owned hospitals for abortions is because they want to keep the operation secret, and privately owned hospitals normally don’t require detailed personal information as we do," Jin said.
In the United States, abortion businesses have worked to keep abortion records confidential. They refuse to give them out, even in cases when authorities need them to prosecute illegal abortions or cases of sexual abuse.