Mongolia is a large landmass with a low population of approximately 3 million spread over 1.56 million kilometres. It is the 19th largest country in the world and is bordered by Russia and China. While traditionally nomadic, the 2010 census showed that 68 percent of the population lives in the capital city, Ulaanbaatar, and ongoing rural-to-urban migration is a recent (since 2000) demographic challenge for the country. Mongolia began its transition from socialism to a parliamentary democracy in 1990. Withdrawal of Soviet support and economic subsidies led to a period of severe hardship in the 1990s for Mongolia, including food shortages, high inflation, and a Total Fertility Rate (TFR) that reach a low of 1.95 percent.
Since the mid-2000s, the economy has been gradually improving, with the birth rate increasing. Life expectancy at birth is recorded at 75.01 years for women and 65.42 years for men. The Total Fertility Rate reached 3.0 in 2013.
Source: Extracted from Mongolia Social Indicator Sample Survey (MSISS) 2013
Sexual and Reproductive Health
Key findings from the 2013 MSISS on the situation of SRHR in Mongolia are as follows:
- The average number of children who woman would bear during her reproductive life (age 15-49) or the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) is estimated to be 3.1.
- The median age at first birth of women aged 25-49 is 22.1.
- The median birth interval increased to 50.7 months.
- 7 percent of women had birth in the last 2 years preceding the survey paid at least one visit to a doctor while 89.6 percent paid 4 or more visits to a doctor.
- 6 percent of all women who gave birth in two years preceding the survey had their first antenatal visit during the first three months of pregnancy.
- 9 percent of newborns born to mothers aged 15-49 in the two years preceding the survey were delivered by skilled personnel.
- 0 percent of mothers who had their deliveries within the last 2 years preceding the survey took iron pills and, on average, for 63 days.
- Knowledge of any contraception method is 99.6 percent among women currently married or in union.
- Current use of contraception was reported by 54.6 percent of women currently married or in union.
- The most popular method is the IUD which is used by 23.5 percent of women.
- 0 percent of married women surveyed had unmet need and the majority of them responded that they do not want any more children (9.3 percent).
- At the national level, 23.3 percent of women aged 15-49 got pregnant in the last 2 years preceding the survey. 14.0 percent ended in induced abortion.
- The number of abortions per 1,000 live births is 189.1 and almost 2 times higher in urban compared to rural area.
- The percentage of urban women whose pregnancy ended in abortion (16.3 percent) is almost 2 times higher than rural women (9.5 percent).
- As women get older or their educational level or household wealth improves, the proportion of abortion tended to increase.
- 3 percent of all abortions carried out in health facilities while 81.0 percent carried out under supervision of gynecologists.
- Within the two years preceding the survey, for 59.1 percent of the women who had the most recent abortion, manual vacuum aspiration (MVA) was used, for 14.1 percent pills were used and for 11.0 percent dilation and curettage (D&C) was used.
- The median period of pregnancy is 1.6 months. Rural women, adolescents (age 15-19) and women with lower educational level or women from poorest household are more likely to have late abortions.
- Among women who had abortions, 20.0 percent because of a health concern, 18.5 percent chose abortion because they wanted to have children later, 12.8 percent because they already had many children and 10.3 percent because they want to get a job.
- According to the UN Abortion Policies and Reproductive Health around the World (2014), abortion is permitted on all grounds.
HIV & AIDS:
- At the national level, 91.6 percent of women aged 15-49 and 91.2 percent of men have heard of AIDS.
- 4 percent of women aged 15-49 and 18.8 percent of men aged 15-54 were found to have comprehensive knowledge about AIDS.
- 3 percent of women aged 15-49 know that HIV can be transmitted from mother to child.
- Only 2.5 percent of women aged 15-49 and 4.8 percent of men aged 15-54 express accepting attitudes on all four factors.
- The percentage of women aged 15-49 who know of a facility for HIV testing is 75.8 percent.
Sexual and Reproductive Rights
Child Early & Forced Marriage (CEFM):
- 4 percent of women had a baby in early age or before age 18.
- 6 percent of rural women had a baby before age 18 while this percentage is 1.5 times lower or 3.8 among urban women.
- For those who have had sexual intercourse, 0.6 percent of women and 2 percent of men had their first sexual intercourse experience before age 15.
Violence Against Women (VAW):
- One in three women experience domestic violence, and one in ten have been battered (according to the National Center Against Violence).
- Experiences of sexual coercion by boyfriends or relatives is highest amongst women aged 15-19 (7.9 percent) compared with other age groups.
- 50 percent of human trafficking victims are between 18-26 years of age.