Teenage Pregnancy: Time for Change and Action
10 Pages Posted: 16 May 2019
Date Written: April 25, 2019
Although the teenage pregnancy rate in the United States has declined over the years, it is still higher than the teenage pregnancy rates in other industrialized countries. This paper attempts to identify the types of changes that have occurred between 1994 and 2017 by comparing the results of a 1996 study by Ventura, Martin, Matthews & Clarke with the results obtained using the 2017 National Natality Dataset obtained from the Center of Disease Control via the National Center of Health Statistics. The new data from 2017 demonstrates that the proportions of teenage births have gone down over the past few years, and that the racial/ethnicity component of teenage childbearing is also showing a narrowing trend. Even though we recognize the downward trend in teenage pregnancy, the concerns regarding the long-term socioeconomic outcomes arising from teenage births are still at large. We conduct a quantitative Logit analysis to identify what factors increase the probability of teenage motherhood in the United States and also conduct a short analysis of relevant existing public policies to provide recommendations for improvements that could potentially reduce the risk factors of teenage pregnancy in the United States.
Keywords: teenage childbearing, birth rates, socioeconomic outcomes
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