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U.S. Abortion Rate Declining Since 1974

Update Date: Jan 18, 2017 09:10 AM EST

A recent survey reveals U.S. abortion rates have dropped its lowest since 1974. The report was released Tuesday by Guttmacher Institue, a known research group that supports abortion rights.

In 2011, there was a total of 1.06 million of abortion reported. In 2014, there were 926,200 abortions, which show a drop of 12.5 percent nationwide. Apart from the six states that had high increase of abortions over the same time period, there was a significant decrease in other areas nationwide.

District of Columbia, New York, New Jersey, Maryland and Florida had the highest abortion rates, while Wyoming, Mississippi and South Dakota had the lowest. This was because they had only one abortion clinic operating since 2014.

US News reported that the abortion rate was 14.6 per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44, the lowest recorded rate since abortion was legalized nationally by the Supreme Court's Roe vs. Wade decision in 1973. The number of abortion clinics have decreased as well by 6 percent, from 839 in 2011 to 788 in 2014. 

Rachel Jones, lead author of the new report noted that majority of women who get abortions have low income. Jones said "having fewer clinics didn't always translate into having fewer abortions."

Majority of Republicans in the congress have vowed to work with Trump to stop federal funding for Planned Parenthood, which provided women's health services. They plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

NPR reported Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards said efforts to help women get better access to contraception are paying off. She points in particular to recent improvements in the rate of unintended pregnancies, and a historically low teen pregnancy rate.

"It shows that we're finally doing a better job of helping women get access to birth control that's affordable and that's high-quality," Richards said. She added "We shouldn't go backwards on access to birth control."

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