CDC: Decrease in Number of Births Alarming?

CDC: One Percent Decrease in Number of Births in 2011
CDC: One Percent Decrease in Number of Births in 2011

(HealthDay News) – In 2011 there was a 1% decrease in the number of U.S. births, according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Joyce A. Martin, MPH, from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues examined data reported on the birth certificates of the 3.95 million births that occurred in 2011.

The researchers note that there was a 1% decrease in the number of births in 2011, to 3,953,590. In addition, the general fertility rate decreased by 1%, to 63.2 per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years. There was an 8%  decrease in the teenage birth rate, to 31.3 per 1,000 births. For women in their 20s, birth rates declined, while they remained the same for those aged 30–34 years and increased for 35- to 44-year-old women. There was a 2% decrease in the total fertility rate, to 1,894 per 1,000 women. There was a decrease noted in the number and rate of births to unmarried women, while the percentage of births to unmarried women remained unchanged (40.7%). There was no change in the cesarean delivery rate, which remained at 32.8%. For the fifth year the preterm birth rate decreased, to 11.73%, and the low birth weight rate decreased slightly to 8.1%. There were no significant changes in the rates of twin, triplet, and higher-order multiple births.

"This report presents detailed data on numbers and characteristics of births in 2011, birth and fertility rates, maternal demographic and health characteristics, place and attendant at birth, and infant health characteristics," the authors write.

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