DECEMBER 5, 2019
Oklahoma’s teen birth rate decreased by 8 percent between 2017 and 2018, according to Births: Final Data for 2018 from the National Center for Health Statistics. The state’s birth rate dropped from 29.7 to 27.2 for teens, aged 15-19. The U.S. average rate decreased by 7 percent, from 18.8 to 17.4. (Rates are the number of births per 1,000 females of the same age range.)
A larger decrease occurred among Oklahoma’s younger teens, aged 15-17, with the birth rate dropping14 percent between 2017 and 2018, from 12.5 to 10.7. The U.S. average rate declined by 9 percent, from 7.9 to 7.4.
For older teens, aged 18-19, the 2018 Oklahoma birth rate decreased by 7 percent from the previous year, moving from 56.1 down to 52.4. The U.S. rate declined 8 percent, from 35.1 to 32.3.
The birth rate for Oklahoma teens has been reduced by 56% over the past decade, dropping from 61.6 in 2008 to 27.2 in 2018 for ages 15-19. The number of births to teens has reflected an equally dramatic decline over the past decade, dropping from a total of 7,581 births to girls age 19 and younger in 2008, down to 3,512 teen births in 2018. This success story is due, in large part, to support from Oklahoma foundations and the federal government, and the dedicated effort by health, education and youth-serving organizations to provide programs that are effective in meeting the needs of adolescents today.
Even with the impressive reduction in teen birth rates and numbers, Oklahoma remains among the states with the highest teen birth rates, ranked at 46th in 2018. Other states have been focused on reducing teen and unintended pregnancy, understanding the cost-effective health and economic benefits of prevention investments.
For free, downloadable copies of the 2018 State Teen Birth Rate factsheets and other state and county teen birth data, check: http://healthyteensok.org/fast-facts/
For resources to help reduce teen and unintended pregnancy in your community, go to: http://healthyteensok.org/resources/