Fewer babies having babies

California’s teen-pregnancy programs, raised awareness reduce teen birth rate

Data released by the state Department of Public Health has revealed that the lowest teen birth rate in California’s history came in 2010.

The teen birth rate dropped from 32.1 births per 1,000 girls between ages 15 and 19 in 2009 to 29 births per 1,000 girls, according to California Healthline. Birth rates among minority populations dropped across the board in comparison to 2009—Hispanic girls’ rates fell from 50.8 births per 1,000 teens to 45 births, African-American girls’ birth rates went from 37 births per 1,000 teens to 34 births, and the Asian/Pacific Islander birth rate dropped from 8.5 births per 1,000 teens to 7.3 births. Experts speculated the declining birth rates are the result of teen-pregnancy-prevention programs and raised awareness.

“The continuing decline in teen birth rates underscores the importance of teen-pregnancy-prevention programs in California,” said Ron Chapman, director of the Department of Public Health. “We must continue our work to achieve yet another milestone next year.”