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Health Indicator Report of Adolescent Births

Research indicates that bearing a child during adolescence is associated with long-term difficulties for the mother, her child, and society. These consequences are often attributable to poverty and other adverse socioeconomic circumstances that frequently accompany early childbearing. Compared to babies born to older mothers, babies born to adolescent mothers, particularly young adolescent mothers, are at higher risk of low birthweight and infant mortality. These babies are more likely to grow up in homes that offer lower levels of emotional support and cognitive stimulation, and they are less likely to earn a high school diploma. For the mothers, giving birth during adolescence is associated with limited educational attainment, which in turn can reduce future employment prospects and earning potential.

Adolescent Birth Rate by Age of Mother, Utah and U.S., 1997-2013


*U.S. data is preliminary for 2013.

Data Sources

  • Utah Birth Certificate Database, Office of Vital Records and Statistics, Utah Department of Health
  • Population Estimates: National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) through a collaborative agreement with the U.S. Census Bureau, IBIS Version 2013
  • National Vital Statistics System, National Center for Health Statistics, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Data Interpretation Issues

The adolescent birth rate does not include abortions or miscarriages, and is an underestimate of the adolescent pregnancy rate.


The adolescent birth rate is reported as the number of live births per 1,000 adolescent females.


The number of live births to adolescent mothers.


The number of adolescent females in the population.

Other Objectives

Utah's 42 Community Health Indicators Similar to HP2020 Objective FP-8: Reduce PREGNANCY rates among adolescent females.

How Are We Doing?

The teen birth rates per 1,000 females aged 15-19 in Utah, for the past five years were: 2009: 30.8 2010: 27.9 2011: 23.7 2012: 23.2 2013: 20.6 A high proportion, 84.6% of Utah females aged 15-17 and 64.3% of Utah females aged 18-19 reported their pregnancy as unintended in the 2011 Pregnancy Risk Assessment and Monitoring Survey (PRAMS).

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

Utah's adolescent birth rate has been lower than the United States' overall rate over the past decade, but is higher than several other states. Utah and U.S. adolescent birth rates per 1,000 females age 15-19 for the past five years were: 2009-Utah 30.8/U.S. 37.9 2010-Utah 27.9/U.S. 34.2 2011-Utah 23.7/U.S. 31.3 2012-Utah 23.2/U.S. 29.4 2013-Utah 20.6/U.S. 26.6* *Preliminary data

What Is Being Done?

Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs: The Utah Department of Health receives federal funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families for two programs addressing teen pregnancy prevention in Utah. The first program is for Abstinence Education Programs targeting Utah youth ages 10-16 with a specific focus on youth in the Utah Juvenile Justice System, youth of Hispanic origin and/or non-White race, and youth residing in areas with adolescent birth rates higher than Utah's state rate. Through a competitive bid process, the Utah Department of Health (UDOH) sub-contracted these federal funds to several community organizations. The second program is for Personal Responsibility Education Programs (PREP). Funds must be used for a program designed to educate adolescents on both abstinence and contraception to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS, and three adulthood preparation subjects (healthy relationships, education and career success, and healthy life skills). Through a competitive bid process, the Utah Department of Health sub-contracted these funds to several community organizations. The target population is Utah youth ages 14-19 with a specific focus on youth in the Utah Juvenile Justice System, youth of Hispanic origin and/or non-White race, current teen moms, and youth residing in areas with adolescent birth rates higher than Utah's state rate. For more information or questions regarding the two programs mentioned above, contact 801-538-6253, or

Available Services

Plan Your Health: Live Your Life Booklets: This resource promotes the concept of lifetime health among adolescents. It also focuses on the importance of making a life plan and deciding whether that plan includes becoming a parent someday or not. Furthermore, this tool outlines many variables and behaviors that increase the likelihood of having healthy pregnancy outcomes in the future. Whether or not a pregnancy occurs in the future, adolescents need to be aware that how they treat their body now, can directly affect birth outcomes down the road. The information provided in this tool empowers adolescents with the knowledge they need to make wise decisions about their health, life goals, and reproductive future. Copies of this resource are available free of charge to Utah residents and organizations. To request copies, please call 801-538-6253, or send e-mail to The booklet is available in English and Spanish and can be viewed in English at the following site:
Page Content Updated On 11/25/2014, Published on 12/09/2014
The information provided above is from the Department of Health's Center for Health Data IBIS-PH web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Mon, 30 November 2015 2:45:56 from Department of Health, Center for Health Data, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:46:03 MDT