Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Birth control policies in Iran: a public health and ethics perspective
  1. Mehdi Aloosh1,
  2. Yashar Saghai2
  1. 1McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  2. 2Berman Institute of Bioethics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Mehdi Aloosh, McGill University, McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec, H4A 3J1, Canada; mehdi.aloosh{at}


In less than one generation, a unique demographic transition has taken place in Iran. A population growth rate of 4.06% in 1984 fell to 1.15% in 1993 and a total fertility rate of 6.4 births per woman in 1984 declined to 1.9 in 2010. In 2012, Iranian policymakers shifted away from a birth control policy towards a pro-natalist policy. At first glance, this may seem reasonable since its goal is to avoid the consequences of an aging population. However, we argue that the policy package raises serious public health, socioeconomic, environmental and ethical concerns and is likely to fail on its own terms.


Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.