Declines in Births to Females Aged 10–14 in the United States, 2000–2016

April 25, 2018

TJ Mathews, NCHS Demographer

Questions for T.J. Mathews, M.S., Demographer, Statistician, and Lead Author of “Declines in Births to Females Aged 10–14 in the United States, 2000–2016

Q: Why did you decide to examine trends in births to females aged 10-14 in the U.S.?

TM: We have published data on births to females aged 10-14 for decades but only once before have we published data specific to this group. We decided this significant decline was noteworthy and needed publishing.


Q: How have U.S. birth rates to females ages 10-14 changed since 2000?

TM: The birth rate to females aged 10-14 in the U.S. has declined 78% from 0.9 per 1,000 in 2000 to 0.2 in 2016.


Q: What differences or similarities did you see among race and Hispanic origins in this analysis?

TM: From 2000 to 2016, all groups observed declines in the birth rate for this age group. The largest decline was seen for non-Hispanic black females, a decline of 79%. This group had the highest rate in both time periods.


Q: Is there any comparable trend data on U.S. births to females aged 10-14 older than 2000?

TM: While we didn’t study trends in birth rates to 15-19 year olds in this publication we have been reporting significant declines for this age group over this time period.


Q: Were there any surprises in the findings from this report?

TM: First is the wide range of birth rates for this age by state. Using 2014 to 2016 combined the highest rate was seen in Mississippi, 0.7 per 1,000 while a handful of states had rates as low as 0.1. A second interesting observation is that the majority,  81%, of births to 10-14 years old occurred to those 14 years old.


Q: What is the take home message in this report?

TM: Birth and birth rates to females aged 10-14 in the U.S. have declined significantly since 2000.  Disparities by race and Hispanic origin and by state persist.


Fact or Fiction: Are Asian mothers are less likely to be unmarried at the time they give birth than mothers of other race/ethnicities in the U.S.?

April 18, 2018

Source: National Vital Statistics Reports, Volume 67, Nos. 1 and 2

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr67/nvsr67_01_tables.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr67/nvsr67_02.pdf


Asian American Mothers: Maternal Characteristics by Maternal Place of Birth and Asian Subgroup, United States, 2016

April 18, 2018

Questions for Anne K. Driscoll, Ph.D., Statistician and Lead Author of “Asian American Mothers: Maternal Characteristics by Maternal Place of Birth and Asian Subgroup, United States, 2016

Q: What do you feel was the most interesting finding in your report?

AD: Although Asian mothers as a groups differ from other mothers on the characteristics analyzed, they are a heterogeneous group; birthplace and Asian subgroup are key sources of that heterogeneity.


Q: What countries of origin do Asian-Indian mothers come from?

AD: Asian Indian refers to people from India (i.e., to distinguish between people from India and Native Americans/ American Indians).


Q: How do we explain the significant difference between unmarried childbearing among Asian women vs. the rest of the U.S.?

ADIt is likely that the difference is related to differences in educational attainment and maternal age between Asian women and other women, as well as to other factors not measured here.


Q: How do the high education levels among Asian mothers compare to U.S. mothers of other races?

ADAsian mothers have the highest education levels of any race/Hispanic origin group; the percent with at least a bachelor’s degree is roughly 50% higher than that of non-Hispanic white mothers, the group with the second highest education level.


Q: Any other significant findings you’d like to mention about your study?

ADAsian mothers, both those born in and outside the US, were more likely to be age 30 and over and less likely to be teen mothers than other groups.


Cigarette Smoking During Pregnancy: United States, 2016

February 28, 2018

Questions for Patrick Drake, Health Statistician and Lead Author of “Cigarette Smoking During Pregnancy: United States, 2016.”

Q: Why did you decide to examine smoking during pregnancy?

PD: Questions on tobacco use during pregnancy were first introduced on the US certificate of live birth in 2003, but not all states reported that information until 2016. NCHS’s 2016 natality file provides the first look at nationally representative rates of smoking during pregnancy in the United States from vital statistics data.


Q: Has the National Vital Statistics System ever examined cigarette smoking during pregnancy in the past?

PD: NCHS produced a report on the topic using data from the National Vital Statistics System in 2016. That report presents levels of smoking during pregnancy as well as smoking cessation rates in 46 states and the District of Columbia for 2014.


Q: What differences or similarities did you see among race and ethnic groups, and various demographics, in this analysis?

PD: Smoking rates varied widely by state, maternal age, race and Hispanic origin, and by maternal education:

  • Women in West Virginia smoked during pregnancy about five times as often as women in the States with the lowest smoking rates.
  • Non-Hispanic white women smoked during pregnancy nearly six times as often as Hispanic women, and nearly twice as often as non-Hispanic black women.
  • While less than 1.0% of women with a bachelor’s degree or higher smoked during pregnancy, 12.2% of women with a high school diploma or GED smoked during pregnancy.

Q: What is the take home message in this report?

PD: It has been well established that maternal tobacco use during pregnancy is linked to a host of negative infant and child outcomes.  Despite the well-understood risk to mother and child, still about one of every 14 women in the United States smoked during pregnancy. These levels do vary widely by state, maternal age, race and Hispanic origin, and education, but any amount of smoking during pregnancy is too much. These data can be used to better identify which women might be at greater risk of smoking during pregnancy and better inform future preventative strategies.


Births: Final Data for 2016

January 31, 2018

Questions for Joyce A. Martin, M.P.H., Demographer, Statistician, and Lead Author on, “Births: Final Data for 2016.”

Q: Are there any data that are new in this report compared with previous annual final birth reports?

JM: Yes!  This report includes new national data on a number of items including prenatal care utilization in the US, whether the mother received WIC food during pregnancy, cigarette smoking before and during pregnancy, maternal body mass index of overweight or obese, primary cesarean and vaginal birth after previous cesarean delivery and source of payment for the delivery.


Q: Is the U.S. birth rate going up or down in 2016?

JM: Both the number of births and the general fertility rate (births per 1,000 women aged 15-44) declined in the US from 2015 to 2016.


Q: Are teen births in the U.S. continuing to decline?

JM: Yes, the teen birth rate declined 9% from 2015 to another record low.


Q: What did the findings show for the mean age of U.S. mothers at first birth?

JM: The 2016 mean or average age of mothers having a first birth was a record high in 2016, at 26.6 years.


Q: What is the take home message in this report?

JM: Births are down overall and among women 15 to 29 years of age.  The cesarean delivery rate continued to decline but rates of preterm birth and low birthweight are on the rise.  Birth certificate data are a rich source for important information on mothers and their newborns.


Urban and Rural Variation in Fertility-related Behavior Among U.S. Women, 2011–2015

January 9, 2018

Questions for Kimberly Daniels, Ph.D., Statistician and Lead Author of “Urban and Rural Variation in Fertility-related Behavior Among U.S. Women, 2011–2015.”

Q: Why did you decide to examine fertility-related behavior among U.S. women in urban and rural areas?

KD: We decided to examine fertility-related behavior among U.S. women based on urban and rural residence because while there are many National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) reports on fertility, they do not usually include information about place of residence.  Two NCHS reports were recently published that use Vital Statistics data from birth certificates and focus on urban and rural differences.

One of those reports was on urban and rural differences in infant mortality rates and the other on urban and rural differences in teen birth rates.  After seeing the differences shown in those reports, we decided to work on an NSFG report focusing on fertility-related behavior and place of residence.


Q: Are there any findings among the urban-rural differences that surprised you?

KD: As far as what findings in this report surprised me, based on other publications we reviewed before starting this report I expected that the percentage of currently married women would be higher in rural areas compared with urban areas.  The results in this report showed that the percentage of women who were currently married in each area was similar, around 40%.  I also expected that there would be a difference for cohabitation; although I am not sure which group I expected would be higher.

The results for age at first sexual intercourse may be surprising to readers of the report.  This report uses data from women ages 18-44.  Place of residence is measured at the time of interview.  Among adult women who have ever had sex, the average age at first sexual intercourse was lower for women living in rural areas, 16.6 years on average, compared with 17.4 for women living in urban areas.


Q: Do you have any older trend data to this report from the National Survey of Family Growth for urban and rural fertility-related behavior?

KD: As far as trends over time, we do not show trend data in this report on urban and rural variation in fertility-related behavior.  Some older NSFG reports do include that information, such as this one on fertility, family planning, and reproductive health using 2002 data.  The variable that classifies women as living in an urban or rural area is available on our public use datasets.  It is available to download from our website so researchers could examine time trends or differences in other topical areas by place of residence.


Q: What did your report find on contraceptive use among women in urban and rural areas?

KD: The report looked at contraceptive method use at last sexual intercourse among women ages 18-44 who had sex in the last 12 months.  Contraceptive methods were grouped into four categories based on effectiveness at preventing pregnancy; no method, a less effective method, a moderately effective method, and a most effective method.  The results showed that similar percentages of women in urban and rural areas used no method of contraception, 21.0%.  A higher percentage of women in urban areas used a less effective method, such as a condom, compared with women in rural areas.  A higher percentage of women in urban areas also used a moderately effective method, such as the oral contraceptive pill, compared with women in rural areas.  A higher percentage of women in rural areas used one of the most effective methods of contraception such as a sterilizing operation or an intrauterine device compared with women in urban areas.

As we note in the report, the percentages we show for contraceptive use and the other measures do not account for other factors that could play a role.  For example, the figure that describes differences in number of births shows that women in rural areas are more likely to have had any births and have a higher average number births.  So, some of the differences in contraceptive use across the two groups could be related to differences in plans for future childbearing.


Q: What is the take home message of this report?

KD: The takeaway messages are shown in the key findings and summary in the report.  Among women aged 18-44, on average, women living in rural areas had their first sexual intercourse at younger ages than women living in urban areas. Similar percentages of women in urban and rural areas were currently married, cohabiting, or never married. A higher percentage of women living in rural areas were formerly married compared with women in urban areas. Women living in rural areas were more likely than women living in urban areas to have had any births and had a higher average number of births. Among women aged 18–44 who had sexual intercourse in the past year, a higher percentage of women living in rural areas used one of the most effective methods of contraception at their last intercourse compared with women in urban areas.  It is important to remember that place of residence was measured at the time of interview.

Some of the outcomes in the report occurred when the woman lived in another geographic location.  Also, as I mentioned above the results do not account for other factors that could play a role in the urban and rural differences presented in the


Stat of the Day – November 30, 2017

November 30, 2017