The age of people in Taiwan getting married and having children is older than before. Demographic data of 2019 by the Ministry of the Interior shows that the average age of marriage is 32.6 years old for males and 30.4 years old for females. Furthermore, the average age of females having their first child is 31 years old, while among this statistic, 23% of them are over 35 years old. This is 2.4 times more compared with 10 years earlier (it was 9.4% in 2009). This trend toward late marriage and childbirth is clear, so the Health Promotion Administration is advising the younger generation to make their marriage and childbirth plans as soon as possible.
No matter if you are male or female, older age giving birth will have a higher risk of unhealth babies
Considering the risk of giving birth, the health of babies, the preparation, the suitability, and the stability of emotions of being parents, a suggestion by the Health Promotion Administration says the best marriage and childbirth plan period should be between 25 to 35 for females and before 40 for males. An overseas treatise points out that there is higher possibility for women over 35 years old to have infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth, and fetal chromosomal abnormalities, as well as pregnancy complications such as gestational hypertension, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia during the pregnancy period. This higher risk possibility does not happen to women only, the male fertility becomes lower as he gets older. Also, a study published in a U.K. medical magazine reveals that males over 45 years old could increase the possibility of his partner having gestational diabetes. Besides these, babies who have older age parents have an increased potential to suffer from premature delivery, lower than average birth weight, and autism.
The Health Promotion Administration provides subsidies for prenatal check-ups. Benefit women in advanced maternal age or with a history of genetic disease more safely.
To maintain a healthy pregnancy period, the Health Promotion Administration provides subsidies of 10 prenatal examinations, 2 prenatal healthcare instruction services, 1 ultrasound check-up, and 1 Group B Streptococcus screening for each pregnant woman.
To promote the Prenatal Genetic Diagnosis Test for high risk pregnancies, the Health Promotion Administration additionally provides subsidies for those who are aged above 34, those where an abnormality has been found in the current or prior pregnancy, those with a history of genetic disorders in her or her spouse’s family, or those with a possible innate abnormality (for example, by ultrasound or serum screening of pregnant women suspected to have unusual conditions). This Prenatal Genetic Diagnosis Test Subsidy of NTD 5,000 can be deducted directly from the cost at the hospital proceeding with the examination by filling in an application form when taking any prenatal genetic diagnosis test, such as Amniocentesis, etc..
Moreover, the Health Promotion Administration reminds elderly male not to neglect the potential health risk for babies. For prospective parents (male or female) whose four degree of kinship have had a genetic disease, the government will equally provide a subsidy of NTD 1,500~2,000 for them to do an examination. For those who meet the criteria, please bring the medical certification of their relatives’ disease to the hospital for the examination and application.