Abortion statistics in the United States

Trends in the U.S. abortion rate from the Guttmacher Institute (2018)

Abortion statistics in the United States vary by source because reporting is not mandatory. Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)[1][2] and the Guttmacher Institute regularly report these statistics using different methodologies.[3] Abortion statistics are commonly presented as the number of abortions, the abortion rate (the number abortions per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44) or the abortion ratio (the number of abortions per 1,000 live births to women ages 15 to 44).

CDC surveillance reportsEdit

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began abortion surveillance reports in 1969 to document the number and characteristics of women obtaining legal induced abortions. CDC compiles the information that most states, the District of Columbia and New York City collect to produce national estimates. The CDC numbers, published annually, are derived from actual counts of every abortion reported to state health departments. Reporting to the CDC is not mandatory,[1] and some states choose not to report abortions to the CDC. CDC’s surveillance system compiles information on legal induced abortions only. Because reporting is voluntary, CDC surveillance reports undercount the actual number of abortions in the United States.

For 2015, CDC reported 638,169 abortions from 49 of the 52 reporting areas. The abortion rate was 11.8 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 years, and the abortion ratio was 188 abortions per 1,000 live births.[2] Between 1970 and 2015, CDC reported nearly 45.7 million legal induced abortions.

Note that there is a large decrease in reported abortions between 1997 and 1998. This is because CDC's reporting areas were reduced from 52 in 1997 to 47 in 1998. The actual decline from 1997 to 1998 in those 47 reporting areas was only 2%.

Table of Abortion Totals Reported by the CDC
Note: From 2006- 2015, CDC estimates are based on 49 reporting areas (the health departments of 47 states, the District of Columbia, and New York City). California, Maryland, and New Hampshire do not currently report to the CDC on abortion surveillance.[2]

Year Number of abortions
reported to CDC
Induced abortions
ratio per 1,000
live births
CDC Abortion
Surveillance Report
1970 193,491 52 [4]
1971 485,816 137 [4]
1972 586,760 180 [4]
1973 615,831 196 [4]
1974 763,476 242 [4]
1975 854,853 272 [4]
1976 988,267 312 [4]
1977 950,675 325 [4]
1978 1,157,776 347 [4]
1979 1,251,921 358 [5]
1980 1,297,606 359 [5]
1981 1,300,760 358 [6]
1982 1,303,980 354 [4]
1983 1,268,987 349 [4]
1984 1,333,521 364 [7]
1985 1,328,570 354 [7]
1986 1,328,112 354 [8]
1987 1,353,671 356 [8]
1988 1,371,285 352 [9]
1989 1,396,658 346 [10]
1990 1,429,247 345 [11]
1991 1,388,937 339 [12]
1992 1,359,145 335 [13]
1993 1,330,414 321 [14]
1994 1,267,415 334 [14]
1995 1,210,883 311 [15]
1996 1,221,585 314 [16]
1997 1,186,039 274 [17]
1998 884,273 264 [18]
1999 861,789 256 [19]
2000 857,475 246 [20]
2001 853,485 246 [21]
2002 854,122 246 [22]
2003 848,163 241 [23]
2004 839,226 238 [24]
2005 820,151 233 [4]
2006 852,385 236 [25]
2007 827,609 231 [26]
2008 825,564 234 [27]
2009 789,507 227 [28]
2010 765,651 228 [29]
2011 730,322 219 [30]
2012 699,202 210 [31]
2013 664,435 200 [32]
2014 652,639 193 [33]
2015 638,169 188 [34]
Total 45,789,558

Guttmacher Institute estimatesEdit

Unlike the CDC, the pro-choice research and policy organization Guttmacher Institute does not rely only on state reports but periodically surveys abortion providers in all states and estimates the number of abortions in the United States.[3] They consistently identify higher rates of abortion than the CDC while also stating that even their own figures may underestimate abortion rates by up to five percent.[35] Both pro-choice and pro-life activists consider the Guttmacher figures to be more accurate than the CDC.[35]

For 2014, the Guttmacher Institute reported 926,200 abortions, an abortion rate of 14.6 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 years.[3]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Abortion | Data and Statistics | Reproductive Health | CDC". www.cdc.gov. 2019-01-16. Retrieved 2019-07-24.
  2. ^ a b c Jatlaoui TC, Boutot ME, Mandel MG, Whiteman MK, Ti A, Petersen E, Pazol K (November 2018). "Abortion Surveillance - United States, 2015". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. 67 (13): 1–45. doi:10.15585/mmwr.ss6713a1. PMC 6289084. PMID 30462632.
  3. ^ a b c Jones RK, Jerman J (March 2017). "Abortion Incidence and Service Availability In the United States, 2014". Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health. 49 (1): 17–27. doi:10.1363/psrh.12015. PMC 5487028. PMID 28094905.
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  18. ^ Herndon J, Strauss LT, Whitehead S, Parker WY, Bartlett L, Zane S (June 2002). "Abortion surveillance--United States, 1998". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 51 (3): 1–32. PMID 12369584.
  19. ^ Elam-Evans LD, Strauss LT, Herndon J, Parker WY, Whitehead S, Berg CJ (November 2002). "Abortion surveillance--United States, 1999". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 51 (9): 1–9, 11–28. PMID 12495293.
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  25. ^ Pazol K, Gamble SB, Parker WY, Cook DA, Zane SB, Hamdan S (November 2009). "Abortion surveillance - United States, 2006". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 58 (8): 1–35. PMID 19940837.
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  28. ^ Pazol K, Creanga AA, Zane SB, Burley KD, Jamieson DJ (November 2012). "Abortion surveillance--United States, 2009". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 61 (8): 1–44. JSTOR 24806060. PMID 23169413.
  29. ^ Pazol K, Creanga AA, Burley KD, Hayes B, Jamieson DJ (November 2013). "Abortion surveillance - United States, 2010". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 62 (8): 1–44. PMID 24280963.
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  33. ^ "Correction and Republication: Abortion Surveillance - United States, 2014". MMWR. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 67 (46): 1302. November 2018. doi:10.15585/mmwr.mm6746a5. PMC 6289080. PMID 30462627.
  34. ^ Jatlaoui TC, Boutot ME, Mandel MG, Whiteman MK, Ti A, Petersen E, Pazol K (November 2018). "Abortion Surveillance - United States, 2015". Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries. Washington, D.C. : 2002. 67 (13): 1–45. doi:10.15585/mmwr.ss6713a1. PMC 6289084. PMID 30462632.
  35. ^ a b "FACT CHECK: Have There Been 60 Million Abortions Since Roe v. Wade?". checkyourfact.com. Retrieved 2019-07-30.