(Photo: Reuters/Jim Young)
Abortions performed in the United States have continued their trend of decline in 2010, according to a recently released report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For 2010, the CDC reported last Friday that 765,651 abortions were performed nationwide, representing a 3 percent decrease from 2009 statistics.
The numbers derived from data given to the CDC from 52 reporting areas, specifically the 50 states, the District of Columbia and New York City. Of the 52 reporting areas, 49 gave reports for 2010 and 46 were closely analyzed by Karen Pazol, et. al., of the CDC.
"Among these same 46 reporting areas, the abortion rate for 2010 was 14.6 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44 years, and the abortion ratio was 228 abortions per 1,000 live births," reads the abstract of the report in part.
Pazol also wrote that the decrease in abortion procedures from 2001 to 2010 in particular showed a great decrease in the latter years sampled.
"From 2001 to 2010, the total number, rate, and ratio of reported abortions decreased 9%, 10%, and 8%, respectively," wrote Pazol.
"Given the 3% decrease from 2009 to 2010 in the total number and rate of reported abortions, in combination with the 5% decrease that had occurred in the previous year from 2008 to 2009, the overall decrease for both measures was greater during 2006–2010 than during 2001–2005, despite the annual variations that resulted in no net decrease during 2006–2008."
Randall O'Bannon, director of education and research for the National Right to Life Committee, told The Christian Post that while there were many factors to this trend, "elements like pro-life education and legislation have had a considerable impact."
"During this time frame, we have seen the proliferation of medical technology such as fetal heartbeat stethoscopes and pregnancy ultrasounds, making the living humanity of the unborn child known to a wider population," said O'Bannon.
"Popular books, documentaries and countless pieces of pro-life literature on fetology have made it increasingly plain to all that abortion really does stop a beating heart. Pregnancy care centers, now numbering in the thousands, have offered not just a sympathetic ear, but practical assistance that has helped many women find a way to avoid a tragic mistake."
O'Bannon also told CP that another factor he believes contributed to this was "pro-life legislation."
"Right to know laws help ensure that a woman is aware of the wonder of development happening inside her, and that she knows not only of abortion's risks, but alternatives that are safer for her and her child," said O'Bannon.
"Waiting periods, ultrasound viewing laws, laws limiting the use of taxpayer funds for abortion have also surely had an impact. The campaign to ban partial-birth abortion woke a great many people to the gruesome reality of abortion."
The CDC numbers for 2010 also reported that women in their 20s were the most likely to have an abortion, with an estimated 60 percent. By contrast adolescents aged 15 to 19 accounted for 14.6 percent.
Statistics reported to the CDC also found that nearly 66 percent of all abortions were performed at or before 8 weeks gestation, with 1.2 percent being performed at or after 21 weeks gestation.
Karen Hunter, spokeswoman for the CDC, told The Christian Post that the government body only tracks the numerical trends on abortions rather than their causes.
"CDC does not have any information about the 'why' behind the numbers nor do we make predictions about any health issue," said Hunter.