Births: Provisional Data for 2018

May 15, 2019

Questions for Brady E. Hamilton, Ph.D., Demographer, Statistician, and Lead Author of “Births: Provisional Data for 2018.”

Q: How does the provisional 2018 birth data compare to previous years?

BH: The  number of births, the general fertility rate, the total fertility rate, birth rates for women aged 15-34, the cesarean delivery rate and the low-risk cesarean delivery rate declined from 2017 to 2018, whereas the birth rates for women aged 35-44 and the preterm birth rate rose.


Q: When do you expect the final 2018 birth report to come out?

BH: The 2018 final birth report is scheduled for release in the fall of 2019.


Q: How did the data vary by age and race?

BH:  Birth measures shown in the report varied widely by age and race and Hispanic origin groups. Birth rates ranged from 0.2 births per 1,000 females aged 10-14 to 99.6 births per 1,000 women aged 30-34. By race and Hispanic origin, the cesarean delivery rate ranged from 28.7% of births for non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native women to 36.1% for non-Hispanic black women and the preterm birth rate ranged from 8.56% for non-Hispanic Asian women to 14.12% for non-Hispanic black women.


Q: Was there a specific finding in the provisional data that surprised you?

BH: The report includes a number of interesting findings. The record lows reached for the general fertility rate, the total fertility rate and birth rates for females aged 15-19, 15-17, 18-19, and 20-24 are noteworthy. In addition, the magnitude of the continued decline in the birth rate for teens aged 15-19, down 7% from 2017 to 2018, is also historic.


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

BH:  The number of births for the United States was down 2% from 2017 to 2018, as were the general fertility rate and the total fertility rate, with both at record lows in 2018. Birth rates declined for nearly all age groups of women under 35, but rose for women in their late 30s and early 40s. The birth rate for teenagers aged 15–19 was down 7% from 2017 to 2018. The cesarean delivery rate and low-risk cesarean delivery rate were down in 2018. The preterm birth rate rose for the fourth year in a row in 2018.


Q: Do you anticipate this drop will continue?

BH: The factors associated with family formation and childbearing are numerous and complex. The data on which the report are based come from all birth certificates registered in the U.S. While the scope of these data is wide, with detailed demographic and health   information on rare events, small areas, or small population groups, the data do not provide information on the attitudes and behavior of the parents regarding family formation and childbearing. Accordingly, these data do not answer the question of why the number of births dropped in 2018 or if the decline will continue.


State by State Health Data Source Updated on NCHS Web Site

April 19, 2017

CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics has updated its Stats of the States feature on the NCHS web site.  This resource features the latest state-by-state comparisons on key health indicators ranging from birth topics such as teen births and cesarean deliveries to leading causes of death and health insurance coverage.

Tabs have been added to the color-coded maps to compare trends on these topics between the most recent years (2015 and 2014) and going back a decade (2005) and in some cases further back.

To access the main “Stats of the States” page, use the following link:

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/pressroom/stats_of_the_states.htm


Births: Final Data for 2014

December 23, 2015

NCHS has released a new report that presents 2014 data on U.S. births according to a wide variety of characteristics.

Data are presented for maternal age, live-birth order, race and Hispanic origin, marital status, attendant at birth, method of delivery, period of gestation, birthweight,and plurality.

Birth and fertility rates are presented by age, live-birth order, race and Hispanic origin, and marital status.

Key Findings:

  • In 2014, 3,988,076 births were registered in the United States, up 1% from 2013.
  • The general fertility rate rose slightly to 62.9 per 1,000 women aged 15–44, the first increase in the rate since 2007.
  • The teen birth rate fell 9% from 2013 to 2014, to 24.2 per 1,000 females aged 15–19.
  • Birth rates declined for women in their early 20s but increased for women aged 25–39.
  • The total fertility rate (estimated number of births over a woman’s lifetime) rose slightly to 1,862.5 births per 1,000 women.
  • The birth rate for unmarried women declined for the sixth straight year.
  • The cesarean delivery rate declined to 32.2%.
  • The preterm birth rate declined 1% to 9.57%, but the low birthweight rate was essentially unchanged at 8%.
  • The 2014 twin birth rate was 33.9 per 1,000 births, a new high for the United States; the triplet and higher-order multiple birth rate dropped 5% to 113.5 per 100,000 total births.

Maternal Morbidity for Vaginal and Cesarean Deliveries, According to Previous Cesarean History: New Data From the Birth Certificate, 2013

May 20, 2015

A new NCHS report presents recent findings for 2013 on four maternal morbidities associated with labor and delivery—maternal transfusion, ruptured uterus, unplanned hysterectomy, and intensive care unit (ICU) admission—that are collected on birth certificates for a 41-state and District of Columbia reporting area, which represents 90% of all births in the United States.

Key Findings from the Report:

  • Rates of maternal morbidity were higher for cesarean than vaginal deliveries—rates of transfusion (525.1 per 100,000) and ICU admission (383.1) were highest for primary cesarean deliveries, while rates of ruptured uterus (88.9) and unplanned hysterectomy (143.1) were highest for repeat cesarean deliveries.
  • Higher rates of maternal morbidity for cesarean compared with vaginal deliveries were found for nearly all maternal age groups and for women of all races and ethnicities.
  • Women with no previous cesarean delivery who had vaginal deliveries had lower rates for all maternal morbidities compared with those who had cesarean deliveries.
  • Women with a previous cesarean delivery who labored and had vaginal birth generally had lower rates for most of the morbidities, but failed trials of labor were generally associated with higher morbidity than scheduled repeat cesarean deliveries, especially for ruptured uterus, which was seven times higher (495.4 per 100,000 compared with 65.6).

 


Trends in Low-risk Cesarean Delivery in the United States, 1990–2013

November 5, 2014

A new NCHS report explores trends in low-risk cesarean delivery at a national level, with particular focus on changes from 2009 through 2013. Trends are examined by state of residence, gestational age, age of mother, and race and Hispanic origin of mother. An earlier report based on birth certificate data, using a slightly different definition, explored low-risk trends from 1990 through 2003

Key Findings from the Report: 

  • The low-risk cesarean delivery rate reached a low of 18.4% in 1997 and then rose steadily to a high of 28.1% in 2009. The rate decreased from 2009 through 2013, reaching 26.9%. Declines were widespread during this time.
  • Low-risk cesarean delivery rates were down for more than one-half of states.
  • Rates declined for all term gestational ages (37 or more completed weeks); the largest decline was at 38 weeks, down 9%.
  • Rates for all maternal age groups and race and Hispanic origin groups were also down. The largest declines were for women under 40 (6%–8%) and for non-Hispanic white women (6%); rates for these groups decreased at all term gestational ages.

STATE VITALS: ALASKA

January 10, 2014

The state known as “The Last Frontier” has the highest suicide rate and ranks 6th in accidents. Alaska also has mortality rates that are higher than the U.S. for the following causes: cancer, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease and influenza/pneumonia.

However, Alaska had the lowest rates in the country for low birthweight rate (6% of all births) and cesarean delivery rates (20.8% of all births).  The state also ranks among the 10 lowest rates for heart disease mortality, with an age-adjusted death rate of 151.5.

 


Preliminary Birth Data for 2012 Released

September 6, 2013

NCHS released a new report called Births: Preliminary Data for 2012 that looks at births in the United States. U.S. data on births are shown by age, live-birth order, race, and Hispanic origin of mother. Data on marital status, cesarean delivery, preterm births, and low birthweight are also presented. Key Findings from the Report:

  • The preliminary number of births for the United States in 2012 was 3,952,937, essentially unchanged (not statistically significant) from 2011; the general fertility rate was 63.0 births per 1,000 women age 15-44 years, down only slightly from 2011, after declining nearly 3 percent a year from 2007 through 2010.
  • The number of births and fertility rate either declined or were unchanged for most race and Hispanic origin groups from 2011 to 2012; however, both the number of births and the fertility rate for Asian or Pacific Islander women rose in 2012 (7 percent and 4 percent, respectively).
  • The birth rate for teenagers 15-19 years was down 6 percent in 2012 (29.4 births per 1,000 teenagers 15-19 years), yet another historic low for the nation, with rates declining for younger and older teenagers and for nearly all race and Hispanic origin groups.
  • The birth rate for women in their early twenties also declined in 2012, to a new record low of 83.1 births per 1,000 women. • Birth rates for women in their thirties rose in 2012, as did the birth rate for women in their early forties. • The birth rate for women in their late forties was unchanged.
  • The nonmarital birth rate declined in 2012 (to 45.3 birth per 1,000 unmarried women aged 15-44), whereas the number of births to unmarried women rose 1 percent and the percentage of births to unmarried women was unchanged (at 40.7 percent). • The cesarean delivery rate for the United States was unchanged in 2012 at 32.8 percent.
  • The preterm birth rate fell for the sixth straight year in 2012 to 11.54 percent.
  • The low birthweight rate also declined in 2012, to 7.99 percent.