Good news! The US abortion rate fell 5 percent between 2008 and 2009.
Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published the details for 2009, the most recent year for which statistics are available, and noted that this was the biggest one-year decline in at least a decade.
Here’s what the CDC had to say:
In 2009, 784,507 legal induced abortions were reported to CDC from 48 reporting areas. The abortion rate for 2009 was 15.1 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years and the abortion ratio was 227 abortions per 1,000 live births.
Compared with 2008, the total number and rate of reported abortions for 2009 decreased 5% and the abortion ratio decreased 2%. The change from 2008 to 2009 represented the largest single year decrease in the total number and rate of reported abortions for the entire period from 2000 to 2009. Additionally, from 2000 to 2009 the number, rate, and ratio of reported abortions decreased 6%, 7%, and 8%, respectively, to the lowest levels for this entire period...
Although there is no definitive proof as to exactly the reasons for this decline, the correlation is clear: the rate of abortions dropped at the same time that the use of better contraceptives increased.
Another possible factor is the availability of the morning-after pill, which has been increasingly easier to get. It came onto the market in 1999 and in 2006 was approved for non-prescription sale to women 18 and older. In 2009 the age was lowered to 17.
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