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article imageTeen pregnancy results are in, the Southern U.S. wins again

By Nikki Weingartner     Jan 12, 2009 in Lifestyle
Deep south values prevail as teen pregnancy rates soar. The report also revealed that Hispanic and Black teens have a high number of teen pregnancy rates.
The United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention continues to be an outstanding resource when it comes to statistical information with regards to information on diseases and with teen pregnancy being more of an epidemic, its not a surprise to see the CDC's implementation of a state-by-state annual coverage of the problem.
Last week, the federal report uncovered a new winner in the number of teen pregnancies: Mississippi, which was 60 percent higher in the number of teenagers getting knocked up than the national average. That put the preliminary winners, Texas and New Mexico, out of the spotlight for now.
The teen pregnancy rise, however, is not just a southern issue, as CDC statistician Brady Hamilton explained in the Baltimore Sun:
"It's pretty much across the board"
There was a 3 percent rise in 37 states and over half of the states seeing a "significant" rise.
The report also revealed that Hispanic and Black teens have a far greater number of teen pregnancy rates than other ethnic backgrounds. Mississippi, Texas and New Mexico have a high Hispanic and African-American population.
The new reporting system is based upon the review of all birth certificates in a given year and the data shows that the number of mothers between the ages of 15 and 19 are going up. This comes on the heels of a report in December of 2007 that revealed the US teen birthrate had increased for the first time in 15 years from 40.5 teens giving birth out of every 1,000 women to 41.9.
The losers in this so-called contest continue to be New England states, with New Hampshire clocking in with only 18.7 out of 1,000 being teen births. Vermont and Massachusetts had the next least numbers. Those states continue to stay on the end of the scale with relation to teen pregnancies and births so whatever it is they are doing is obviously working.
North Dakota, Rhode Island and New York were the ONLY states to see a drop in the number of teen pregnancies. However, the District of Columbia saw a massive decline. Other states that did not see a significant rise were:
Delaware, Illinois, Michigan, Nebraska, New Jersey, West Virginia, Connecticut and Maine.
University researchers in Mississippi claim that the surge in the state births could simply be a statistical "blip."
Also noteworthy in the report is that the number of unmarried women giving birth rose another 7 percent, bringing that up to over 50 in 1,000 births to unwed women and the number of premature babies being born is the highest that it has been in four decades. One-third of all women are birthing by Cesarean and hump-day is the most common day to have a baby.
*The report is based on final values from 2006. See entire report here in PDF format.
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