National Teen Birth Rate Falls to an All-Time Record Low

Regina F. Graham, Daily Mail, April 29, 2016

The Centers for Disease Control Prevention says the national teen birth rate has fallen to a record low.

For every 1,000 adolescent females, there were 24.2 births in 2014, which is the lowest rate ever recorded, a CDC new report states.

The CDC says from 2006 to 2014 the teen birth rate declined 41 percent.

According to the statistics, the biggest decline in numbers was among black and Hispanic teens, as their birth rates dropped by nearly half since 2006.

However, they still remain twice as likely to give birth in their teens compared to their white peers.

The recent drops in the black and Hispanic teen birth rates look more dramatic in part because they started at far higher rate, Albert said.

The Hispanic rate fell 51 percent–from 77 to 38 births per 1,000 Hispanic girls ages 15 to 19. The black rate fell 44 percent–from 62 to 35 per 1,000.

The white rate fell 35 percent, from 27 to 17 per 1,000.

‘One of the nation’s great success stories of the past two decades has been the historic declines in teen pregnancy and childbearing,’ Bill Albert, spokesman for the National Campaign To Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, told The Huffington Post.

‘Since peaking in the early 1990s, we have seen declines nationally, in all 50 states, and among all racial and ethnic groups. I

‘It’s truly remarkable progress on an issue that many once considered intractable.’

He added that the new report is also a reminder of the challenges that are ahead.

‘The gap is narrowing, but profound disparities remain,’ Albert said.

‘Even with these remarkable declines, African-American teens and Latino teens are far more likely to become pregnant at a time in their life when they say they don’t want to.’

The decline in the teen birth rate is credited to teens consistently using contraception and also having less sex.

Tom Frieden, the CDC Director, is praised the country’s progess, however, he said that still too many teens are having children.

‘By better understanding the many factors that contribute to teen pregnancy we can better design, implement, evaluate, and improve prevention interventions and further reduce disparities,’ Frieden said in a statement.

In addition, the CDC found that some states have relatively low teen birth rates as some have areas with high rates that will require extra attention.

The South and Southwest have several counties where the highest teen birth rates are located.

‘These data underscore that the solution to our nation’s teen pregnancy problem is not going to be a one-size-fits-all – teen birth rates vary greatly across state lines and even within states,’ Lisa Romero, the lead author of the analysis, said in the statement.

‘We can ensure the success of teen pregnancy prevention efforts by capitalizing on the expertise of our state and local public health colleagues.

‘Together, we can work to implement proven prevention programs that take into account unique, local needs.’

Each year, teen births cost the US approximately $9.4billion, according to research cited by the CDC.

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