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Legal Abortion Ratios in the United States, 1973–2009

Find the latest data on legal abortion ratios by selected characteristics.

Characteristic Abortions per 100 live births1
1973 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 19994 20005 2009
Total 19.6 27.2 35.9 35.4 34.4 31.1 25.6 24.5 22.7
Age                  
Under 15 years 123.7 119.3 139.7 137.6 81.8 66.4 70.9 70.8 83.8
15–19 years 53.9 54.2 71.4 68.8 51.1 39.9 37.5 36.1 33.3
20–24 years 29.4 28.9 39.5 38.6 37.8 34.8 31.6 30.0 28.6
25–29 years 20.7 19.2 23.7 21.7 21.8 22.0 20.8 19.8 18.5
30–34 years 28.0 25.0 23.7 19.9 19.0 16.4 15.2 14.5 13.8
35–39 years 45.1 42.2 41.0 33.6 27.3 22.3 19.3 18.1 17.2
40 years and over 68.4 66.8 80.7 62.3 50.6 38.5 32.9 30.1 27.4
Race                  
White2 32.6 27.7 33.2 27.7 25.8 20.3 17.7 16.7 13.1
Black3 42.0 47.6 54.3 47.2 53.7 53.1 52.9 50.3 40.5
Marital status                  
Married 7.6 9.6 10.5 8.0 8.7 7.6 7.0 6.5 n.a.
Unmarried 139.8 161.0 147.6 117.4 86.3 64.5 60.4 57.0 n.a.
NOTE: Data are based on reporting by state health departments and by hospitals and other medical facilities.
1. For calculation of ratios according to each characteristic, abortions with the characteristic unknown have been distributed in proportion to abortions with the characteristic known.
2. For 1989 and later years, white race includes women of Hispanic ethnicity.
3. Before 1989 black race includes races other than white.
4. In 1989 and 1999, Alaska, California, New Hampshire, and Oklahoma did not report abortion data to CDC. For comparison, in 1997, the 48 corresponding reporting areas reported about 900,000 legal abortions.
5. In 2000, 2001, and 2002, Alaska, California, and New Hampshire did not report abortion date to CDC.
6. In 2003, California, New Hampshire, and West Virginia did not report abortion data to CDC.
Source: Health, United States, 2007; Abortion Surveillance, United States, 2009 Surveillance Summaries, November 23, 2012, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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