Women Carrying More Unexpected Pregnancies to Term, Avoid Abortions

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 20, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Women Carrying More Unexpected Pregnancies to Term, Avoid Abortions

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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
December 20, 2005

Atlanta, GA (LifeNews.com) — A new study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics finds women who are pregnant unexpectedly are carrying their pregnancies to term more often than they have before. Pro-life groups hailed the news saying it means fewer women with unplanned pregnancies are having abortions.

NCHS revealed that 14 percent of women who recently gave birth said their pregnancies were unplanned. That’s an increase from 9 percent of women who participated in a 1995 survey.

"People have all kinds of attitudes that don’t always reflect what they choose to do," Anjani Chandra of the health center told he Associated Press.

The Alan Guttmacher Institute, a research group affiliated with Planned Parenthood, told AP the NCHS study shows similar results to their own findings.

Guttmacher found that 26 percent of pregnancies ended in abortion in 1995 and the number has lowered to 24 percent in 2002.

"The two statistics together suggest — but don’t confirm — that a greater percentage of unintended pregnancies resulted in births rather than abortions," AGI spokesman Lawrence Finer told AP.

That’s good news to pro-life groups.

Susan Wills of the pro-life office at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said the results were "no mystery" to her.

"The new data underscores that more women are turning away from abortions, even when it’s a pregnancy they don’t initially want," Wills told AP. "It shows a real pro-life shift."

Karen Pearl of Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion business, disagreed and claimed the lower numbers appeared because Congress and state lawmakers are doing more to limit access to abortion. She also lamented that efforts to increase abstinence awareness may have also played apart.

NCHS surveyed 7,643 women in 2002 and early 2,003 between the ages of 15 and 44.

Some 25 percent of women under 18 classified their pregnancy as unwanted and just 10 percent of women between the ages of 30 and 44 said that. Women most likely to say their pregnancy was unplanned were black (26 percent) or Hispanic (16.8 percent).