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New Report on Teenage Birthrate

New data from the National Center for Health Statistics show that the teen birth rate increased in 26 states between 2005 and 2006, confirming a widespread national trend and reversing a 14-year decline in teen birth rates.

Among the findings:
States with the five highest teen birth rates in 2005 (above 60 births per 1,000 females ages 15-19, compared with 41.9 births per 1,000 females ages 15-19 for the U.S. overall) experienced increases:
Arizona:  7% increase
Arkansas:  5% increase
Mississippi: 13% increase
New Mexico: a statistically non-significant 4% increase
Texas: 2% increase

States with the four lowest teen birth rates (New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Connecticut) showed non-significant changes.

The state with the highest teen birth rate in 2006 (Mississippi, with 68.4 births for every 1,000 female teen ages 15-19) has a rate that is more than 3.5 times the rate of the state with lowest teen birth rate (New Hampshire, with 18.7 births for every 1,000 female teens ages 15-19).

Alaska showed the greatest increase in teen birth rates (up 19%), while the District of Columbia reported the most dramatic decline in rates (down 24%).

The national numbers confirm increases in teen birth rates for all racial/ethnic groups:
Whites: 3 percent increase
Blacks: 5 percent increase
Hispanics: 2 percent increase

“The widespread increase in teen birth rates across states and racial/ethnic groups highlights the need to continue focusing program and funding efforts on pregnancy prevention,” said Senior Research Scientist Jennifer Manlove, Ph.D.

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