Thursday, July 1, 2010

Teen abortions drop to lowest number ever

The following MCCL news release provides a more in-depth analysis of the annual Minnesota Abortion Report, released today.

Teen abortions drop to lowest number ever as young people embrace life for their unborn babies
But Planned Parenthood sets new record even as state abortion numbers decline

ST. PAUL — Abortions performed on minors dropped sharply last year by a full 10 percent to a total of 579, according to a state report released today. Deaths from abortion decreased 4.3 percent in Minnesota last year. Teen abortions accounted for just 4 percent of the 2009 state total.

The 2009 Abortion Report shows a total of 12,388 abortions were performed in the state in 2009, compared to 12,948 the previous year. The 2009 total is the lowest number on record since 1975 and is also the lowest abortion rate (10.9 per 1,000 females age 15-44) since 1975.

The dramatic drop—560 fewer babies were killed than in 2008—demonstrates that pregnant women are being helped and empowered to choose life by the numerous resources available to them across the state.

"MCCL is pleased to see that more and more minor girls are rejecting abortion, in spite of Planned Parenthood's aggressive marketing efforts that target teenagers," said MCCL Executive Director Scott Fischbach. "Pro-life efforts to provide real help to pregnant girls and women continue to succeed. We want every pregnant woman to know that we will help them every step of the way, and that no one should ever force them to have an abortion."

The 579 abortions performed on minor girls last year was the lowest number of abortions on minors ever recorded in Minnesota. Minor abortions peaked at 2,327 in 1980.

Even though the abortion total was the lowest in 34 years, Planned Parenthood managed to increase its abortions last year to a record 3,996. Planned Parenthood performed 1,600 more abortions than the next largest provider. It now performs more than 32 percent of all abortions in the state—its highest percentage ever.

"Despite its claims to the contrary, Planned Parenthood clearly is not concerned with reducing the number of abortions performed in Minnesota," Fischbach said. "Today's report confirms that Planned Parenthood's aggressive marketing of abortion to teenagers, minorities and low-income women is enabling it to achieve its business goal of performing more abortions every year."

Other increases in 2009: Chemical abortions using the dangerous and sometimes lethal RU486 drug rose to 19 percent of all abortions, and taxpayer-funded abortions rose to 31.9 percent of all abortions. Both of these were the highest percentages ever in the state.

The total number of reported abortions performed in Minnesota since 1973 is 555,650.

The following is additional information concerning “Induced Abortions in Minnesota, 2009, Report to the Legislature,” released July 1, 2010, by the Minnesota Department of Health:

40% of women who received an abortion in 2009 had at least one prior abortion. A total of 949 women reported they had had 3 or more prior abortions

15,158 women received information about abortion risks, complications and alternatives under the Woman's Right to Know informed consent law, which is 2,770 more than the number who underwent abortions

31.9% of all abortions were taxpayer funded in 2009—this is the highest percentage since the Minnesota Supreme Court’s 1995 Doe v. Gomez decision required taxpayers to pay for elective abortions. Self-funded abortions are at their lowest level since state abortion reporting began in 1998

Planned Parenthood performed an average of more than 10 abortions every day in 2009, for a total of 3,996. The provider increased its abortions by 1% while total abortions decreased 4.3%

Planned Parenthood now performs 32% of abortions in Minnesota, its largest percentage since abortion reporting began in 1998. It has been the state's largest abortionist since 2004

Planned Parenthood increased its abortions by 63% from 2000 to 2009; total abortions dropped 14% over the same period


  • 98 different people performed abortions in 2009
  • 8 physicians each performed more than 600 abortions last year
  • Minnesota's 7 abortion clinics performed more than 99% of all abortions in 2009

Abortions performed on minors (under age 18) declined 10% to 579 from 645 in 2008. With very few exceptions, abortions performed on minors have been declining steadily since 1987. In 2006, abortions on minors spiked 16% after Planned Parenthood opened two feeder clinics in Twin Cities suburbs and marketed its services to minors

Race and abortion: African Americans—4% of population, 24% of abortions; Asians—3% of population, 7% of abortions; Caucasians—90% of population, 60% of abortions; Hispanics—3% of population, 6% of abortions

Chemical abortions (RU486) accounted for 19% of the 2009 total, up from 17% in 2008

Rape, incest or "continued pregnancy will cause impairment of major bodily function" combined represented less than 1% of all abortions in 2009

Suction was the most common form of abortion, used for 75% of abortions (76% in 2008). Six instillation (saline) abortions were performed; induction of labor, as a form of abortion, decreased to 6

Reasons women gave for their abortions (more than one reason could be given):

  • Less than 1% for rape, incest, "impairment of major bodily function"
  • 64% "does not want child at this time"
  • 31% economic reasons (down 1% from 2008)


  • 9 occurred during abortion procedure (6 cervical lacerations, 2 hemorrhage, 1 other)
  • 79 occurred after abortion procedure

12,388 abortions equates to more than 33 abortions performed every single day last year.

MCCL is Minnesota’s oldest and largest pro-life organization with more than 70,000 member families and 240 chapters across the state. For more information about MCCL, visit