This article was first published in April 2001.

( Chart 1: Comparison of Death Rates According to official Chinese figures, 2,300,000 in China practised Falun Gong (not to argue that this is obviously a much reduced figure), of whom 1,400 died in the seven-year period (disregarding for now whether these deaths are indeed Falun Gong related). This gives us an average of 200 deaths per annum -- a rate of less than 1/10,000 (0.01%), far lower than China's normal Death Rate of 0.65%.

Chart 2: Comparison of Suicide Rates
The Chinese government alleged that there were 136 "Falun Gong Suicides" in the 7 years, an average of about 20 cases per annum. Assuming these cases were all real "suicides," the suicide rate per annum would be 0.87 (per a population of 100,000). Figures provided by WHO (1989) put China's suicide rate at 17.1 per annum. Experts in the field estimate the actual rate to be higher, reaching 25, while figures from research conducted by Harvard University puts the Chinese figure at 30. The Truth, a book published in 1999 by "Southern Weekend Publisher," revealed that between 1990 and 1994, the average number of suicide deaths in rural China reached 303,047 per annum (Page 354). This was only rural and did not include urban areas. (In the graph) Using a figure of 200,000 suicide-related deaths per annum, China's suicide rate would be 16.7 (given the population being 1.2 billion) (Source: American Encyclopedia, (Taiwan) World Daily)

Chart 3: Deaths from Misuse of Medication
According to figures published by the Chinese Consumer Council, deaths caused by medication misuse in China are approximately 192,000 per annum, far more than the number of deaths caused by infectious diseases. In the US, approximately 100,000 deaths result from misuse of medication each year. With a population of 0.2 billion, the death rate due to medication misuse in the US is roughly 0.05%, which is still 5 times higher than the frantically publicised alleged Falun Gong death rate (0.01%).

Some Statistics of the Medical & Health Care in China
  • Based on official statistics, at least 20,000 children die from accidents in China each year.
  • Respiratory disease is the number 1 killer in China, responsible for a quarter of the total deaths. (Source: Journal of Urban Technology, Vol. 6, No.1, April 1999)
  • Cancer is becoming the number 2 killer in China, after respiratory diseases. Official figures from the "Administration for Cancer Prevention and Control" recorded 1,300,000 lives lost to cancer each year. (Source: Chinese Medical News 48 Beijing Cons Bio-Tech)
  • Females account for over 50% of the suicides. (Professor Arthur Kleinman, Harvard, 1999)
  • Everyday there is on average 870 people committing suicide in China; every year at least 300,000 people die from suicide. This suicide rate is 3 times higher than that of the US. Home to 21% of the world's population, China contributed to 44% of the world's suicide figure. 56% of suicides by females in the whole world happen in China. (Source: Research by World Bank, Harvard University, and WHO)
  • 2,000 people die in China per day due to smoking: as reported by "Tianjing Daily," two of the world's largest scale studies on the topic of "The Relationship between Death and Smoking" were jointly conducted by the College of Preventive Medicine (China), Chinese College of Medicine, Oxford University (UK), and Cornell University (US.) The results from these research studies shows average deaths caused by smoking to have reached 2,000 per day in China, and if the current trend continues, there will be 8,000 death per day by the year 2050, a figure of 3,000,000 per annum. (Source: Duowei News)
  • A sample investigation showed that 16,000,000 people are suffering from various kinds of mental illness in China today, of whom over 7,800,000 are schizophrenia patients. The health expenses burden of mental diseases now ranks number 1 among all diseases, overtaking cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and malignant tumours. (Source: Duowei News)
  • China Daily (English Edition) quoted an investigation by experts, revealing that there are over 8,000,000 people who have venereal disease in China, close to 10 times the official figure of 830,000. What's make it worse, experts are estimating a 40% per annum increase of the venereal disease population. China Daily also reported that China has at least 500,000 cases of HIV infection, where official figure of confirmed HIV positive cases is only 17,316. WHO warned that if China does not act soon, the HIV infected population will grow to 10,000,000 by the year 2010. (Source: Duowei News)
  • Over half of Mainland China's residents do not seek medical help when falling ill. The increasing cost of medical services prevents patients from going to a hospital. A reliable investigative report by experts, produced by the supervision office in the National Congress, said that in the 5 years from 1993 to 1998, the incidence of people falling ill has increased by 7.3%, but half of the patients will not go to see a doctor and the consultation rate has fallen by 18.8% over the 5 year period. According to statistics, over 30% of city dwellers cannot afford to seek medical help due to economic hardship, and 63% of patients who should have been hospitalised could not afford this treatment. The increase in health care expenses is, to a very large extent, being attributed to the increase in the cost of medicine. (Zhongtong News Press, Beijing, 22nd Sept, 2000)
April 6, 2001