Japan to give public employees paid leave for fertility treatment


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What % of birhs are done without Fertility Treatment compared to those that are?

Would this ten day flexibility really make a difference?

What is the trend of people only wanting one child and why do they make that decision?

It may be worth the government thinking of giving a second child bonus payment because I am sure many parents after the first child, with all the sudden problems that gives them, may just decide one is enough. At the very least talk to parents of one child and see what is stopping them have a second one. Maybe give them ten days off a month for baby making and some free love hotel vouchers. In reality just given them some extended lunch breaks on the fertile days of the month.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

This is a great first step! When I was doing IVF in Kyoto, it was very complicated to get the check ups, medicines, consultations, egg extraction, and implantation done around my work schedule. I used to finish class and rush over to the hospital, or spend my Saturday mornings there. At least I had a very flexible job, but I can't imagine how hard it would be for those with strict bosses. Not to mention the price and the psychological ups and downs, which also make it hard. I could really see some women having to make a choice between their careers and having a family unfortunately.

I think this is a good first step in the right direction, but more should be done to support women going through this.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Great, public employees already waste our tax money, and now a very select group of people are going to receive more.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

It may be worth the government thinking of giving a second child bonus payment because I am sure many parents after the first child, with all the sudden problems that gives them, may just decide one is enough. At the very least talk to parents of one child and see what is stopping them have a second one. Maybe give them ten days off a month for baby making and some free love hotel vouchers. In reality just given them some extended lunch breaks on the fertile days of the month.

As a partial answer to Nator's post, according to the The 15th Japanese National Fertility Survey conducted in 2015, the most common reason for having less than the desired number of children is indeed economic reasons, i.e. that it costs too much (answer given by 56.3% of those who did not have the desired amount). If you dig into the data of the survey, you'll also find that a not insignificant part also say they're prevented from having their desired amount of children because they cannot conceive (19.1% for 35-39 y.o. and 28.4% for 40-49 y.o.), which suggests the need for fertility treatment also.

I'd actually suggest anyone who wants to know more about the topic go look at the survey, because the basic facts are often poorly understood, I feel. Another stat to take note of is that Japan spends relatively little on family benefits as a % of GDP; you'd think they'd have gotten the memo by now (literally) and would start upping the cash flow accordingly, but I guess that's too much to expect from J-Gov.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Fertility incentives can be helpful but current fertile couple and economy sufficient couple what they really need is society that encouraging maternal and paternal leave, with guarantee that they won't be any effect on their career, which will happen in Japan. Also child care line up still long in Japan, so if a couple decide to have a child it can cost career for them.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

That's kind of them.

Using our tax money.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Kokegawa, nice post. In addition to cost, I'd add that most live in mansions/apartments way too small for two or more children. Mansions generally have two bedrooms: one for the parents and one for the child, so if you have two, they'll have to bunk up. (If you have no children, your wife will probably end up using the second bedroom and you'll sleep alone.)

5 ( +6 / -1 )

While it appears good for a select few, any assistance to have and care for children is a good thing for Japan’s future.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Yet, still can’t overlook the ‘politicization’ of such issues affecting families. Surprised the headline didn’t lead with this:

- “Increasing access to fertility treatment has been a focus of PM Suga, who pushed for it to be covered by Japan's public health insurance from next April.” -

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

""rapidly declining birth rate.""

Japan already has too many people, improve the lives of the existing ones first, provide better health care, butter pension, FREE EDUCATION to all existing children, eliminate poverty, better living standards then start thinking about bringing more to life.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

thx Kokekawa

Laguna my wife uses the spare room as her office as she works from home. When I was a kid I slept in the same room as my sister on a bunk bed up to the age of five. However you are right the housing stock is not really built for large families and I often wondered how one of my neighbours coped living in the same size flat as me but with four daughters each two years apart.

I expect the logic is that they wanted people to move as that helps the housing market economy. No house builder wants people in the same place for the whole of their lives. Maybe the government should force the new builds to build more bedrooms but I expect they would cheat or just create a room that was bed sized only.

As I never had children and never wanted to have children I do not think the government could come up with any incentive to make me.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Money poorly spent while those with kids already can't cope with their low salary.

Usually it's because they waited too long or stress on their own.

My uncle and his wife adopted and the same year wife could got pregnant.

My brother's wife had to get IVF I believe because she was doing far too much sports.After having the first, she got pregnant naturally for the scond, when needed because she had cooled down.

So many children to adopt in Japan.

My friends, a couple, adopted thanks to a process lasting 2 years, and are now being the finest parents.

Thinking that doing things artificially is better than naturally shocks me.

Japan should push for days off, better salary when young, better day care and much higher family allowances. It worked very fine for me, and I would for a fourth if possible to tell the truth. Experience speaks.

Children are the future, if sufficiently taken care of.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

In Japan, it's one thing to have paid leave and another to actually be allowed to use it. I would imagine many struggling with scheduling fertility treatment have normal paid leave, but are unable to use it. It should also be none of a workplace's business why someone wants a day off. What if a unmarried female employee wants fertility treatment? Will she be outed as a lesbian?

If "national public employees" means kokka komuin, there are only half a million of them. Most civil servants work at local level.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

More days off. The solution for everyone.

Nearly 6 weeks per year for me.

Do I produce less than a Japanese ?

I really don't think so.

Half working at home I am. Telework at will if I wanted.

Do I produce less work and provide less team spirit ?

Not at all. Does not change a thing. Phone, teleconference and sharing heavily wheen meeting physically works pretty well.

More time for personal life means more time personal care too.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Is the word adoption ever used here besides just to pas on a family name of dead lineage?

5 ( +5 / -0 )


Women in general stop having regular menstrual periods after 40, hence the lessen chance to conceive - it's natural. Fertility treatment is a modern day way of cheating the Natural order in life, but at a cost - 1 Million yen, or so, and not guaranteed.

I'm not surprised to see Older men with younger Wives - such is the way in Japan, the Elder man has amassed a bigger nest egg, than the younger man could have.... yet Men can still produce sperm into their late ages, 70+ without even medication.

There are multiple problems here, age discrimination , sexism and stereotyping.

Compare 2 Female University Leavers from a top University both with top Degrees.

After a few years work - One decides to delay work and have the Family thing done with first, the other goes straight into business and seeks career first. in 12 years time, both make a decision to try and switch focus - one finds it impossible to get a job the other, to have a kid...

Where do you think the problem is ?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

As usual, comments are focused on the birth rate, and not the actual problem mentioned in the article, which is that 73%of people undergoing fertility treatments find it difficult or impossible to schedule their treatments considering their work schedules and policies.

Nowhere in the article did it claim to be a cure for the falling birth rate, it's just addressing a specific problem. In the same way that safety belts, air bags, drunk driving fines and laws, better lighting on roads, stop signs etc have all contributed to making driving less dangerous. None of these one things cure the whole overall problem, but they all help address a specific problem.

Paid leave helps infertile couples get their treatments a little easier, and having gone through this process in Japan firsthand, I can tell you it is so difficult on so many levels. Anything done to ease it should be applauded!

Of course, lots need to be done besides this, such as paying younger people a higher salary so they can start saving and planning for kids sooner, etc.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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