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US Birth Rates at Record Low

The National Center for Health Statistics, the Center For Disease Control and Prevention, and the Pew Research Center joined forces to study the decrease in US birth rates. These organizations conducted tremendous research to report findings regarding the birth rate within the U.S. during 2011 and have determined this figure to be at a record low for women ages 15 to 44. Though the data is still considered "preliminary," Pew researchers found the overall birth rate for every 1,000 females of childbearing age dropped to 63.2 - the lowest ever since organizations started recording birth rate stats during 1920.

Researchers believe the greatest factors contributing to the decline in birth rates is the combination of an increasing life span and economic instability, especially among immigrants. Overall, according to initial reports, birth rates have been on the decline since 2007 and were at their peak during the Baby Boom of 1957 with 122.7 per 1,000 women. The study indicates that the number of births to women ages 20 - 40 has declined while births to women ages 35-44 has risen.

Researchers also report that the number of births among teens has slightly decreased. With just over one third of all births to unmarried women, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson issued a statement in reference to the drop with "The reduction in teen pregnancy has clearly been one of the most important public health success stories of the past decade. The fact that this decline in teen births is continuing represents a significant accomplishment."

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