Through the first ten years of the 21st century the birth rate in the United States has been on a steady decline, according to data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On Friday, the CDC released is pregnancy outcomes, which tracked the statistic through 2010. Indeed, in 2010, the pregnancy outcomes report showed a rate of 98.7 pregnancies per 1,000 women aged 15 through 44. This is the lowest pregnancy rate in the United States in the last 35 years. Furthermore, it is 15 percent lower than the levels in 1990.
In addition to this, though, it appears that a decline in pregnancies has naturally led to a decline in the abortion rate as well. Indeed, the abortion rate in the US has also fallen by 35 percent between 1976 and 2010; now at a record low of 17.7 procedures per 1,000 women [of childbearing age].
The report details that in 2010 there were 6.155 million pregnancies. This is actually the lowest number since 1986. Of these pregnancies, though, 65 percent resulted in live birth, nearly 18 percent resulted in induced abortions, and about 17 percent were reported as fetal losses. Additionally, then, the report pointed out the fetal loss rate is lower than the same data from 1990.
On top of this, the report says the rate of teen pregnancy has also dropped significantly. The report shows an astounding 67 percent lower rate of pregnancy among teens 14 and under and a 50 percent decrease in teens 15-19 since 1990. While the birthrate, in 2014, may have shown a slight uptick of only about one percent, the overall birthrate remains at or near all-time lows in all demographics.
Although not involved with this particular study, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists president Mark S. Defrancesco, MD, remarks that this data is vital because it highlights the importance of contraception in the world of women’s health in terms of helping to reduce risk of unplanned pregnancy (as well as abortion).
To MedPage Today, he said “Ob-gyns see, first-hand, the tremendous impact that access to contraception has on a woman’s overall health and well-being. It proves that contraception and access to it remains of utmost importance; it is an essential component to women’s health care. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists will continue to advocate for and improve widespread and consistent use of contraception to help reduce the number of unplanned pregnancies.”