The annual total of abortions in Pennsylvania have reached a record low, according to figures released by the PA Department of Health.
The yearly report shows 30,011 abortions occurred in the Commonwealth in 2017—down from the 30,881 which took place in 2016, a decrease of nearly three percent. Nearly 84 percent of the abortions occurred in five counties: Allegheny (6,140), Dauphin (1,152), Delaware (1,016), Northampton (2,772), and Philadelphia (13,999).
“The fact that abortions are now at a record low is good news for mothers and babies in Pennsylvania,” said Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director for the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, an affiliate of National Right to Life. “While every abortion is a tragedy, this historic low number is an important milestone,” Gallagher added.
The decline in abortions can be attributed to a number of factors. “Technology has created a window to the womb, thanks to advancements in Ultrasound. Women are much more likely to choose life for their babies, if they view an Ultrasound in a supportive environment,” Gallagher said.
“In addition, abortion totals in Pennsylvania would be much higher were it not for the caring pregnancy resource centers administered by Real Alternatives and other groups. These life-affirming organizations provide everything from diapers to day care referrals, along with comprehensive counseling to pregnant women,” Gallagher added.
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Still, one troubling trend is the disproportionate number of abortions performed on African-American women and the rise in abortions among Latina women. A total of 12,865 African-American babies died from abortion in 2017, while 3,038 Hispanic babies were aborted the same year.
“We grieve every abortion, because it is the taking of an innocent, unrepeatable human life. Yet, Pennsylvanians can take great pride in the decline in abortions, which has been aided by the loving alternatives to abortion that exist in the Commonwealth,” Gallagher added.