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Russia's population peaked in 1991 at 148,689,000.1 As of 2006 the population was 143,221,000.4 The number of deaths during 2007 was 477,700 greater than the number of births. This is down from 687,100 in 2006. According to data published by the Russian Federal State Statistics Service, the mortality rate in Russia declined 4% in 2007, as compared to 2006, reaching some two million deaths, while the birth rate grew 8.3% year-on-year to an estimated 1.6 million live births. The primary causes of Russia's population decrease are a high death rate and low birth rate. While Russia's birth-rate is comparable to that of other European countries (11.3 births per 1,000 people in 2007 compared to the European Union average of 10.00 per 1,000) its population declined at a much greater rate due to a substantially higher death rate. In 2007, Russia's death rate was 14.7 per 1,000 population compared to the European Union average of 10.00 per 1,000.1

The social and economic crises that gripped Russia in the early 1990s are reflected in increased mortality and declining life expectancy, especially among able-bodied males. Russia's mortality rate reached its lowest level, 10.4 per 1,000 population, in 1986 (for which a state anti-alcohol campaign received substantial credit); then the figure rose steadily in the ensuing decade. The largest jump was from 12.2 to 14.6 per 1,000 between 1992 and 1993. After having reached 15.7 per 1,000 in 1995, the rate remained virtually flat over the next decade. Based on 2008 estimates, the death rate was 16.1 deaths per 1,000 population. Mortality rates are especially high for able-bodied males in rural areas. Served poorly by the health care system and lacking basic sanitary facilities and conveniences, many farming communities have been transformed into enclaves for the elderly, the indigent, and the sick.5, 6


1 Russia, From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia

4 World Health Organization (WHO), Russian Federation, www.who.int/countries/rus/en/

5 Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook, Russia, www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/rs.html

6 Glenn E. Curtis, ed. Russia: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1996. countrystudies.us/russia/

Unless otherwise noted content is from THE HANDBOOK OF INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION MEDICINE by Laurie C. Miller. © 2004 by Oxford University Press, Inc. Used by Permission.


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