CDC: Abortion Rate in US Falls Five Percent
The rate of abortions in the United States fell by 5%, the largest single-year decrease in a decade, researchers for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.
The decline is outlined in the annual abortion surveillance data for the year 2009, the latest available. It was published on Wednesday in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
About 18% of all pregnancies in the United States end in abortion, the CDC noted. Factors from the availability of abortion providers, state laws, the general economy and access to health services including contraception, can all influence the abortion rate, according to the CDC. An important way to reduce abortions is to eliminate unwanted pregnancies.
‘Despite these multiple influences, given that unintended pregnancy precedes nearly all abortions, efforts to reduce the incidence of abortion need to focus on helping women avoid pregnancies that they do not desire,’ the survey states. ‘Providing women and men with the knowledge and resources necessary to make decisions about their sexual behavior and use of contraception can help them avoid unintended pregnancies.’
The CDC has been reporting annually on the number and rate of abortions since 1969. The annual numbers are based on voluntary reports from states and some other municipalities. A few states, such as California, which is the most populous, do not report. That explains why the CDC said there were about 785,000 abortions in 2009, while other estimates put the number at more than 1 million.