School of Medicine and Health Sciences Poster Presentations

Title

Are We There Yet?: Teen Pregnancy Rates in the District of Columbia from 2006-2014

Document Type

Poster

Keywords

Adolescent health; public health; teen pregnancy; health policy

Publication Date

Spring 2017

Abstract

Preventing teen pregnancy is a critical, high leverage intervention that can expand opportunity for every family in Washington, DC. It is far more effective, and far less costly, than after the fact efforts to deal with neighborhood instability, developmental disabilities, child abuse, school failure, violence, and the continuing cycle of poverty that traps all too many young people. The national teen pregnancy rate has declined continuously over the past two decades, from 61.8 births for every 1,000 adolescent females, compared with 24.2 births for every 1,000 adolescent females in 2014. Rates of teen pregnancy in the District of Columbia have followed this downward trend, but remain well above the national average. In 2007 the DC Campaign for the Prevention of Teen Pregnancy, a grant released a report on the trends of teen pregnancy rates in the District of Columbia. The purpose of this study is to assess the rates of teen pregnancy since the publication of this study. We utilized data from the District of Columbia Department of Health to assess pregnancy rates, live births, abortions, and fetal deaths among females age less than 15 and females ages 15 to 19 from 2006-2014. In this time, we found that pregnancy rates in the 15 to 19-year-old age group has declined by 39% from 58.7 to 35.8 per 1,000. While the cause of this decline is likely multifactorial, it is encouraging news for the many local community organizations dedicated to adolescent health. Teen pregnancy rates remain higher than the national average, however, so continued efforts are necessary to help improve the social and economic health of our nation's capital.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Open Access

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Comments

Poster to be presented at GW Annual Research Days 2017.

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Are We There Yet?: Teen Pregnancy Rates in the District of Columbia from 2006-2014

Preventing teen pregnancy is a critical, high leverage intervention that can expand opportunity for every family in Washington, DC. It is far more effective, and far less costly, than after the fact efforts to deal with neighborhood instability, developmental disabilities, child abuse, school failure, violence, and the continuing cycle of poverty that traps all too many young people. The national teen pregnancy rate has declined continuously over the past two decades, from 61.8 births for every 1,000 adolescent females, compared with 24.2 births for every 1,000 adolescent females in 2014. Rates of teen pregnancy in the District of Columbia have followed this downward trend, but remain well above the national average. In 2007 the DC Campaign for the Prevention of Teen Pregnancy, a grant released a report on the trends of teen pregnancy rates in the District of Columbia. The purpose of this study is to assess the rates of teen pregnancy since the publication of this study. We utilized data from the District of Columbia Department of Health to assess pregnancy rates, live births, abortions, and fetal deaths among females age less than 15 and females ages 15 to 19 from 2006-2014. In this time, we found that pregnancy rates in the 15 to 19-year-old age group has declined by 39% from 58.7 to 35.8 per 1,000. While the cause of this decline is likely multifactorial, it is encouraging news for the many local community organizations dedicated to adolescent health. Teen pregnancy rates remain higher than the national average, however, so continued efforts are necessary to help improve the social and economic health of our nation's capital.