2020 to 2021 saw rise in total number, rate, ratio of abortions


From 2020 to 2021, there were increases in the total number, rate, and ratio of reported abortions, according to research published in the Nov. 24 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Katherine Kortsmit, Ph.D., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues used census and natality data to calculate abortion rates and ratios for 48 reporting areas, which voluntarily provided aggregate abortion data to the CDC; 47 of these reporting areas provided data each year during 2012 to 2021.

Overall, 625,978 abortions were reported to the CDC for 2021 from 48 reporting areas. The researchers found that 622,108 abortions were reported in 2021 among 47 reporting areas, with an abortion rate of 11.6 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 years and an abortion ratio of 204 per 1,000 live births.

The total number of abortions increased 5 percent from 2020 to 2021, the abortion rate increased 5 percent, and the abortion ratio increased 4 percent. From 2012 to 2021, there were decreases of 8, 11, and 1 percent in the total number of abortions, abortion rate, and abortion ratio, respectively. In 2021, women in their 20s accounted for 57.0 percent of abortions.

“Improvements in provider reimbursement and training, patient-centered counseling, youth-friendly services, and client awareness of available contraceptive methods might also help to improve contraceptive access, ensure equitable access to patient-centered contraceptive care, and promote equitable reproductive health in the United States,” the authors write.

More information:
Kortsmit K, Nguyen AT, Mandel MG, et al, Abortion Surveillance—United States, 2021. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (2023) DOI: 10.15585/mmwr.ss7209a1.

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Report: 2020 to 2021 saw rise in total number, rate, ratio of abortions (2023, November 24)
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