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While an earlier report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reflected a 4% decline in births in the United States last year, newly released data showed that the month of December – the roughly nine months after the coronavirus was declared a month – global pandemic was -8 decrease from last year.
“From 2019 to 2020, the number of births decreased for each month, with the largest decreases in December (8%), August (7%) and October and November (6%), the report said. “By comparison, from 2018 to 2019, the number of births decreased in 9 months of the year, with declines ranging between 1% and 3%.”
The report also showed that the decline in birth rates between 2019 and 2020 was greater in the second half of the year than in the first half. Broken down by state, 20 reported declines in the first half of 2020, while 30 reported no significant changes, but all 50 reported declines in the second half.
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New Mexico saw the largest drop in the second half of 2020 at 11%, followed by New York at 9%, and then California, Hawaii, and West Virginia, all reporting 8%. Declines across all races and groups of Hispanic origin were observed across the country.
Following the May report, experts said fear of COVID-19 and the economic impact may have played a role in people’s procrastination, but also found that births had declined by about 2% in previous years . Wednesday’s report noted that work is being done to assess the pandemic’s potential role in the decline.
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“The month-to-month assessment of birth trends will continue to determine whether these declines continued through 2021 or were only seen in 2020 during the first COVID-19 pandemic,” the report said.