Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this guest post are solely those of the author and are not necessarily reflective of Live Action or Live Action News.
Recently, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission released abortion data for the year 2020. While the most recent year for which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released national abortion data is 2018, some states, including Texas, provide abortion data in a more timely manner. Overall, the news is good in the state of Texas.
In 2020, the number of abortions performed in Texas fell by over 3.6 percent. This finding is especially welcome since the number of abortions performed in the Lone Star State increased in both 2018 and 2019. Furthermore, numerous 2020 media reports – relying largely on anecdotal evidence — indicated that more women were seeking abortions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As such, hard data showing that the number of abortions declined in Texas is welcome news to pro-lifers.
Additionally, the new Texas data shows that the number of abortions performed on minors fell by an impressive 9.6 percent between 2019 and 2020. Overall, since 2010, the number of abortions performed on minors in Texas has fallen by a whopping 64 percent. This finding is more important than many realize.
In 2010, the Texas state legislature faced a great deal of criticism when they removed Planned Parenthood from the state family planning program. Many predicted a surge in teen pregnancies. However, the impressive long-term decline in both the minor abortion rate and the minor birth rate clearly shows that positive health trends are possible without forcing taxpayers to fork over millions of dollars in government subsidies to Planned Parenthood.
However, one reason for concern is that the number of chemical abortions continues to increase.
The number of chemical abortions (the abortion pill) increased by 25 percent between 2019 and 2020. Overall, the number of chemical abortions performed in Texas has increased by over 70 percent since 2016. A number of surgical abortion facilities shut down in Texas after the enactment House Bill 2 in 2013. As such, supporters of legal abortion have aggressively been promoting chemical abortions. However, a 2015 study using comprehensive data from California’s Medicaid system shows that chemical abortions have a complication rate that is four times higher than the complication rate for surgical abortions. As always, Texas pro-lifers would do well to continue their educational and legislative efforts to combat this increase in chemical abortions.
Michael J. New is a Research Associate at the Busch School of Business at The Catholic University of America and is an associate scholar at the Charlotte Lozier Institute. Follow him on Twitter @Michael_J_New
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