Why Is This Important?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 birth weight 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., 2000-2016
- 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 2016
- National Vital Statistics System, National Center for Health Statistics, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Risk FactorsExperiencing birth during adolescence can increase a teen's risk of acquiring a sexually-transmitted infection as well as seriously hinder future financial stability due to limited educational attainment.
How Are We Doing?The teen birth rates per 1,000 females aged 15-19 in Utah, for the past five years were:
According to the 2015 Pregnancy Risk and Monitoring Survey (PRAMS) data, 39% of Utah females aged 18-19 reported their pregnancies as mistimed or unwanted. Another 28% reported that they were unsure whether or not they wanted to be pregnant.
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, Family & Youth Services Bureau to provide two programs addressing teen pregnancy prevention in Utah.
The first program is Abstinence Education, targeting Utah youth ages 10-16 with a specific focus on youth in the Utah Juvenile Justice and foster care systems, youth of Hispanic or American Indian origin, and youth residing in areas with adolescent birth rates higher than Utah's state rate. The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) sub-contracts these federal funds to five local health departments.
The second program is the Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP). These 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 at least three adulthood preparation subjects (healthy relationships, education and career success, healthy life skills, adolescent development, financial literacy, and parent-child communication). The Utah Department of Health sub-contracts these funds to four local health departments and the Urban Indian Center of Salt Lake. The target population is Utah youth ages 14-19 with a specific focus on youth in the Utah Juvenile Justice and foster care systems, youth of Hispanic or American Indian origin, pregnant and parenting teens, 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 Elizabeth Gerke at 801-273-2870 or email@example.com.
Date Indicator Content Last Updated: 01/31/2018