Atlanta (GA), – The number of births in the United States decreased by 2% in 2018 compared to the previous year and is the lowest recorded in more than three decades, according to a report released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Diseases (CDC).
The provisional number of births in the United States in 2018 was 3,788,235, 2% less than in 2017 (3.8 million), and only higher than the 3.67 million in 1986, indicated the health authorities.
Meanwhile, the general fertility rate reached 59 births per 1,000 women between 15 and 44 years, also 2% less than in 2017 (60.3) and another record down in the country.
“In general, we noticed a decrease, both in the birth rate and in what is known as replacement (generational),” said Brady Hamilton, a researcher at the National Center for Health Statistics at the CDC.
According to the research, the replacement fertility rate, which is the figure with which one generation can be replaced (2,100 births per 1,000 women), has been below normal during the last decade.
In 2018, this indicator decreased again and stood at 1,728 births per 1,000 women, in another negative record in the country.
The report also found that 2018 was the fourth consecutive year in which the number of births has decreased since 2014, when there was an increase.
The researchers determined that this trend was maintained among the different ethnic groups, among which there was a decrease of 1% among Hispanics, 2% among non-Hispanic whites and African-Americans and 3% among Asians.
“We observed that the behavior of Hispanics is a bit like that of non-Hispanic white women in certain areas,” said Hamilton. “We can see certain similarities between these two groups.”
Despite this, Latina women still have more children than other ethnic groups and races, which contributes to increasing the percentage in relation to the general population.
According to census data, the Hispanic population in July 2017 was 58.9 million, which makes it the largest ethnic or racial minority in the country, with 18.1% of the country’s total population.
This trend will continue and, added to immigration, leads to the census foreseeing that the Latino population will reach 111 million in 2060, a year in which it will represent 28% of the US inhabitants.
According to the CDC, the birth rate among adolescents aged 15 to 19 was 17.4 births per 1,000 women in 2018, which represents a decrease of 7% compared to 2017 and another record downward among this age group, decreasing 58% since 2007.
The birth rate decreased among all ages of women under 35, but grew among those aged between 35 and 39, a band that increased by 1% in 2018, from 52.3 births per 1,000 women in 2017 to 52.6 in 2018.
It also rose among women between 40 and 44 years old, with an increase of 2%, with 11.6 births per 1,000 mothers in 2017 and 11.8 a year later.
“If we analyze the last two or three decades, specifically since 1971, we have noticed an increase in the fertility rate among older women, and women are putting off having children,” said the researcher.
Regarding the method of giving birth, deliveries by caesarean section declined one tenth in 2018 and stood at 31.9% of the total, the lowest figure since 2009.
On the other hand, the rate of premature births rose for the fourth consecutive year and reached 10.02% in 2018, while that of babies with low birth weight remained unchanged with respect to 2017 (8.28%). (EFEUSA ).