Quirky News

  • 17 February 2014, 10:10

China opens abandoned baby hatches

Baby PA

Chinese authorities have opened 25 'baby hatches' across the country allowing parents to safely abandon their unwanted children.

They plan to establish many more over the coming months, despite criticism that they could encourage people to give up their babies.

The hatches, which consist of an incubator and a delayed alarm, increase the chances of a baby surviving. Most of those abandoned have disabilities or serious illnesses.

The China Center for Children's Welfare and Adoption told the state-run news agency, Xinhua, that more than two dozen baby hatches had been set up since the first one opened in the city of Shijiazhuang in Hebei province in 2011.

The BBC reports that a number have opened in the last few months. One, in Guangzhou, received 79 babies in its first 15 days.

Parents place a child in the hatch, press an alarm button and then leave, remaining anonymous. Someone then retrieves the baby five to 10 minutes later.