Kansas Abortions Drop 12 Percent in 2010, Lowest Since 1988

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Mar 29, 2011   |   5:13PM   |   Topeka, KS

The number of abortions in Kansas fell 12 percent last year, according to a preliminary report from the state health department. They are now at their lowest point since 1988.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment announced Tuesday that there were 8,338 reported abortions in 2010, which represents a substantial drop from the number of abrtions in 2009. The number of abortions dropped 1,136 from the previous year totals and they are down 32.4 percent when compared with the 2000 figures.

The new numbers show the number of women living in state received slightly more abortions than those living out of state and coming across the border to places like Overland Park, Kansas for abortions. Some 4,188 women from Kansas got abortions in Kansas while 4,150 came from another state. Of the out of state residents, 98.2 percent lived in neighboring Missouri who traveled to abortion centers on the Kansas side of the Kansas City border.

Abortions reached a high of 12,445 in Kansas in 1999.

Looking further at the new figures, 33.6 percent of those who obtained abortions were between the ages of 20-24, which is typically the case in most states. The largest decline in abortions came among that age range group. Almost three out of five (58.9%) of the abortions occurred to women 20-29 years of age.

The information also shows young girls who are victims of statutory rape are getting abortions as 8 girls under the age of 14, 30 girls aged 14, and 70 girls aged 15 received abortions in 2010. The data revealed 288 girls aged 16-17 also obtained abortions as did 770 girls aged 18-19.

The state health department receives information from abortion centers across the state which, according to Kansas law, are required to report the number of abortions and certain demographic information about the women and the abortions themselves that don’t violate the privacy of the women involved.

Meanwhile, the state’s Right to Know law requires abortion practitioners to provide women information about abortion’s risks and alternatives to women considering an abortion. The state health department data appears to indicate abortion practitioners met with 8,615 women — but with 8,338 having abortions, the law appears to have prevented the deaths of just under 300 unborn children.

Looking further at the data:

* White women accounted for 66 percent of all abortions and black women accounted for 22 percent while Hispanics accounted for 9.8 percent of all abortions and Asians 3.8 percent.

* Some 85 percent of women getting abortions in Kansas were unmarried and only 27.9 percent had not previously been pregnant. About 60 percent already had one child at the time of the abortion.

* The figures showed 40.1 percent of all abortions done in Kansas were repeat abortions with 9.5 percent of women having had two abortions already, 3.6 having had three, and 1.9 percent of women having had four or more abortions previously.

* About 65 percent of all abortions occurred at less than 9 weeks into pregnancy while 4.3 percent were done between 17-21 weeks and 1 was reported to have been done over 22 weeks of pregnancy.

* About 65 percent of all abortions involved a surgical abortion procedure while 26 percent involved the abortion drug mifepristone and 8.6 percent involved the D&E procedure.

See the abortion report at https://www.kdheks.gov/hci/abortion_sum/2010itop1.pdf