Abortions Are on the Rise in the U.S., Reversing a 30-year Decline
A new report from the Guttmacher Institute shows the number of abortions in the U.S. increased from 2017 to 2020, reversing what had been a three-decade decline.
The report found 930,160 abortions were performed in the U.S. in 2020, an 8% increase from the 862,320 performed in 2017.
The U.S. abortion rate similarly rose, increasing from 13.5 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44 in 2017 to 14.4 per 1,000 women in 2020.
Abortions increased across all regions of the country between 2017 and 2020, rising 12% in the West, 10% in the Midwest, 8% in the South, and 2% in the Northeast.
In 2020, one in five (20.6%) U.S. pregnancies ended in an abortion, up from 18.4% in 2017.
Guttmacher found the rise in abortion between 2017 and 2020 was accompanied by a 6% decline in births, suggesting that “fewer people were getting pregnant and, among those who did, a larger proportion chose to have an abortion.”
The report is Guttmacher’s latest Abortion Provider Census, representing the 1,687 health care facilities that provided abortions in 2019 and 2020.
Guttmacher undertakes the census every three years, completing the present report in May 2022.
Guttmacher found substantial increases in abortions in Oklahoma (+103% between 2017 and 2020), Mississippi (+40%), and Idaho (+31%).
Substantial decreases were found in Nebraska (-96%), South Dakota (-74%), and West Virginia (-31%).