According to a recent survey, there has been a rise in the number of abortions performed in the United States, reversing what had been a drop that had lasted for three decades.
The rise in abortion rates started in 2017, and according to a projection by the Guttmacher Institute, a research group that advocates for women’s access to abortion services, one in every five pregnancies, or 20.6%, would have resulted in an abortion by the year 2020. In 2017, 18.4% of pregnancies were terminated by means of an abortion.
The institution, which reports that the number of abortions jumped to 930,160 in 2020 from 862,320 in 2017, said that it obtains statistics by calling every known abortion facility in the nation. Every area of the nation saw a rise in the number, with the exception of the Northeast, which had a decrease of two percent. The number rose by twelve percent in the West, ten percent in the Midwest, eight percent in the South, and two percent in the Northeast.
The new information was made public just as the Supreme Court was getting ready to hand down a decision that might have the impact of overturning the precedent set by Roe v. Wade, which has kept abortion legal in the United States for over half a century. If the final decision of the court is similar to a draught opinion that was published last month, it is anticipated that approximately half of the states will swiftly ban or severely restrict access to abortion, while other states are preparing to expand access for patients who live in states where abortion is unavailable.
According to the findings of the new analysis, the overall rate of abortion climbed to 14.4 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 in 2020, which represents a 7 percent rise from 2017’s rate of 13.5 abortions per 1,000 women in this age group.
According to the survey, during this time period there was a 6 percent drop in the number of births that occurred throughout the country. This meant that “fewer individuals were becoming pregnant and, among those who did, a bigger percentage decided to have an abortion.”
“there were no apparent trends” to explain each state’s trajectory, according to the analysis, which revealed that the number and rate of abortions grew in 33 states and the District of Columbia. It proposed a number of causes for the rise on a national scale, including developments that directly impacted those with low incomes, the demographic that has been the most likely to seek abortions in recent years: There has been an increase in the number of states that have extended Medicaid coverage for abortion, as well as charities that provide individuals seeking abortions financial support.
The policy of the Trump administration, which prevented programmes that received federal family planning money, often known as Title X grants, from promoting the option of abortion to patients, might be considered another element in this incident. According to the findings of the Guttmacher report, the fact that Planned Parenthood and several state governments chose not to accept funding from Title X as a result of this rule may have resulted in fewer low-income individuals having access to other family planning services, such as contraception, and increased the number of pregnancies that were unintended. Since then, the government of Joe Biden has put an end to the Trump-era policy.
The increase in the number of abortions had occurred at a period when several states with conservative governments were imposing additional regulations on the practise. According to the report, however, despite the fact that 25 states passed 168 abortion restrictions between 2017 and 2020, many of these restrictions were passed by states that already had significant restrictions in place, suggesting that the new laws may not have prevented a significant number of additional abortions. The period covered by the report was from 2017 to 2020.
According to the report, at the same time, other states enacted 75 provisions to protect or expand access to abortion. These provisions included mandating that insurance cover abortions and allowing nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and certified nurse midwives to provide some abortion services.
It demonstrates that people in every state seek abortions despite restrictive measures in many states, according to Leslie Reagan, a historian of American medicine and public health at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “It shows that people seek abortions despite restrictive measures in many states.”
The majority of the first year when the coronavirus pandemic was active was covered by these statistics. According to the research, even though access to abortion was restricted in certain jurisdictions during that time period as a result of attempted bans as well as epidemics and limitations on in-person medical treatment, access was preserved in other states. In addition, a judge’s ruling made it possible for patients to receive abortion pills through the mail for a portion of the year 2020. Abortion pills are responsible for more than half of the abortions performed in the country. The Food and Drug Administration made this practise permanent in December 2021.
Dr. Reagan, who authored the book “When Abortion Was a Crime,” expressed her belief that “the terrible unemployment and food hardship that followed the shutdown” during the epidemic had also contributed to the rise in the number of abortions that were performed. “Many individuals were unable to provide for themselves and their immediate families, and they were aware that they could not take care of another kid.”