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etvfutures.com May 24, 2018


US Fertility Rates Hit Record Lows... Again

18 May 2018, 01:26 | Opal Carroll

US births sink to lowest number in 30 years, CDC says

US Fertility Rates Hit Record Lows... Again

Birth rates fell for almost all age groups of women younger than 40 in 2017, sending overall fertility rates to a record low, US health officials reported Thursday.

The low birthweight rate (LBW) also increased in 2017 for the third straight year to 8.27 percent, from 8.17 percent in 2016.

Why? Experts aren't exactly sure.

General fertility rate for women age 15 to 44 was 60.2 births per 1,000 women-the lowest rate since the government started keeping records over 100 years ago.

"Education and access to contraception are big factors in decreasing teen pregnancies", Wu noted.

The total fertility rate in the U.S.in 2017 was once again below the level at which a generation can replace itself.

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Over three-quarters of women continue to receive first trimester prenatal care in 2017, ticking up slightly from 2016 (77.3% versus 77.1%, respectively). Notably, the provisional birth rate for teenagers fell 7% to another record low (18.8 births per 1,000 women), continuing recent trends. Rates rose for women in their early 40's.

According to Wu, "this may reflect changing career paths for women, and also advances in assisted reproduction".

The researchers found that the provisional number of US births in 2017 was 3,853,472, which was down 2 percent from 2016 and a 30-year low.

Rates of C-sections were essentially unchanged, at close to one-third of deliveries.

While the number of births nudged up in 2014, it's fallen for three consecutive years.

This study was led by researchers at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.



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