Statistics

Unintended Pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Infections  Among Youth is a Local Issue    

Despite recent gains, the US still has the highest rates of teen pregnancy among comparable countries.

The US birth rate is nearly 2x higher than that of the UK, 10x higher than Switzerland, and more than 3x higher than Canada1.

STD rates among US teens are also high. The US teen HIV rate is 4.5x greater than in Germany and gonorrhea rates are 30x higher than in the Netherlands.2

Nationally, overall teen birth rates decreased 37% between 1991 and 20093 ­

However, local teen pregnancy rates remain high.*

                        County                        State Ranking                                                  

                        Chemung                     6th

                        Schuyler                       13th

                        Steuben                       41st

                        Tompkins                     62nd

Costs of Teen Childbearing

Nationally

  • Teen childbearing costs US taxpayers at least $9 billion per year 5
  • 2/3 of families started by a teen mom are poor 5
  • ¼ of teen moms go on public assistance within 3 years of the child’s birth 5
  • The children of teen moms are more likely to be born prematurely and at a low birth weight 5
  • The children of teen moms are 2x more likely to suffer from abuse and neglect 5
  • The daughters of teen moms are 3x more likely to become teen moms themselves 5
  • The sons of teen moms are 2x more likely to end up incarcerated6
  • Children born to teen moms are more likely to end up in foster care5
  • For every $1 spent on teen pregnancy and STI prevention saves $2.65 in total medical and social costs.7
  • Only 36% of teen moms under the age of 18 will graduate from high school.8

In New York State

  • A November 2006 analysis shows teen child bearing cost NYS taxpayers $421 million (2004)9
  • Most of the costs are associated with the negative consequences of teen childbearing and being the child of a teen mother
    • Annual cost of $186 million for Medicaid and SCHIP
    • $204 million for child welfare,
    • $203 million for incarceration, and
    • $117 million in lost tax revenue (2004 data)9
  • Cost per year for each child of a teen mom 17 and under = $6,094 9
  • Every $1 spent on family planning services saves NYS taxpayers $4 in future costs

Locally:

 Using 2006 cost data and 2008 birth rates (most recent county specific data available)

County

Number of Children Born

Costs (over the child’s lifetime)10

Chemung

118

$2.9 million

Steuben

96

$2.3 million

Schuyler

23

$568,000

Tompkins

41

$1.01 million

Prevention offers a terrific return on investment and represents sound fiscal policy. Reducing teen pregnancy and childbearing not only improves the well-being of children, families and communities, but reduces the burden on taxpayers.

 

1Teen Birth Rates: How does the US Compare? National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.
2Strategies for Organizational Success: Talking Points on Science-Based Approaches and Programs. Advocates for Youth. 2009.
3Summary of 2009 Preliminary Birth Data from the National Center of Health Statistics. National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. December 2010.
 4The Facts: Comprehensive Sex Education: Research and Results. Advocates for Youth. 2009.
5 Why it Matters: Linking Teen Pregnancy to Other Critical Social Issues. National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. March 2010.
6 Science Says: The Public Cost of Teen Child Rearing. National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. December 2006.
7The Facts: Comprehensive Sex Education: Research and Results. Advocates for Youth. 2009.
8 Diploma Attainment Among Teen Mothers. Child Trends. January 2010.
9 By the Numbers: The Public Costs of Childbearing in New York. National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. November 2006.
10 By the Numbers Calculator. National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. http://www.thenationalcampaign.org/costs/calculator.asp