Teen birth rates reach all-time low

Tennessee ranks 12th among states for teen birth rates, according to a report released Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

That report noted that births among girls ages 15-17 had reached an all-time low in the United States, declining 63 percent from 1991 to 2012. The birth rate among this age group went from 38.6 for every 1,000 teenage girls to 14.1 over this time period.

The birth rate in Tennessee for this age group as of 2012 is 17.3 per 1,000 girls.

Despite the progress, about 1,700 births a week occur among this age group, the CDC said.

"Although we have made significant progress reducing teen pregnancy, far too many teens are still having babies," said CDC Director Tom Frieden.

"Births to younger teens pose the greatest risk of poor medical, social and economic outcomes. Efforts to prevent teen childbearing need to focus on evidence-based approaches to delaying sexual activity and increasing use of the most effective methods of contraception for those teens who are sexually active."


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