Nearly all US states see hefty drop in teen births

5:30 AM, May 23, 2013   |    comments
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NEW YORK - A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is showing a big drop in teen birth rates that some experts say is startling.

All states but West Virginia and North Dakota showed significant drops over five years. But the Mountain States of Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada and Utah saw rates fall by 30 percent or more.

In 22 states, teen Hispanic birth rates plunged at least 40 percent, which was described as "just amazing," by the report's lead author, Brady Hamilton of the CDC.

Experts believe the explanation is complicated and probably varies a bit from state to state.

The report released Thursday shows the lowest birth rates are in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Vermont. The highest continue to be in the South, led by Arkansas and Mississippi.

An overall decline in births the past five years is attributed to a weak economy.

The teen birth rate per 1,000 by state in 2011, and percentage decline since 2007:

Alabama, 41, 22 percent

Alaska, 36, 16 percent

Arizona, 39, 35 percent

Arkansas, 51, 16 percent

California, 29, 28 percent

Colorado, 29, 31 percent

Connecticut, 16, 29 percent

Delaware, 29, 25 percent

District of Columbia, 43, 15 percent

Florida, 30, 31 percent

Georgia, 38 , 28 percent

Hawaii, 30, 22 percent

Idaho, 28, 31 percent

Illinois, 30, 27 percent

Indiana, 35, 19 percent

Iowa, 25, 23 percent

Kansas, 35, 17 percent

Kentucky, 44, 17 percent

Louisiana, 45, 18 percent

Maine, 21, 20 percent

Maryland, 25, 28 percent

Massachusetts, 15, 28 percent

Michigan, 28, 17 percent

Minnesota, 19, 31 percent

Mississippi, 50, 28 percent

Missouri, 35, 22 percent

Montana, 29, 17 percent

Nebraska, 27, 23 percent

Nevada, 36, 30 percent

New Hampshire, 14, 29 percent

New Jersey, 19, 25 percent

New Mexico, 49, 24 percent

New York, 21, 18 percent

North Carolina, 35, 27 percent

North Dakota, 28, no change

Ohio, 32, 21 percent

Oklahoma, 48, 18 percent

Oregon, 26, 25 percent

Pennsylvania, 25, 19 percent

Rhode Island, 21, 27 percent

South Carolina, 39, 25 percent

South Dakota, 34, 17 percent

Tennessee, 41, 24 percent

Texas, 47, 24 percent

Utah, 23, 35 percent

Vermont, 17, 20 percent

Virginia, 25, 28 percent

Washington, 25, 24 percent

West Virginia, 44, no change

Wisconsin, 23, 25 percent

Wyoming, 35, 29 percent

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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