Change Indicator

Teen births by race and ethnicity in United States

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Definition and Source



Births to teenagers age 15 through 19 by race and ethnicity.  Rate is per 1,000 females between age 15 and 19.

This measure of teenage childbearing focuses on the fertility of all females ages 15 to 19, regardless of marital status. Rates from 1991 through 1999 are based on revised population estimates that are consistent with results from the 2000 Decennial Census. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) revised their rates from 1991 through 1999 to provide more accurate estimates of fertility and mortality levels during the 1990s. It should also be noted that these figures represent the race of the mother, not the race of the child. This is important because increasing numbers of children are born to parents of different races. On birth certificates, as on most federal data collection forms, the question regarding whether a person is Hispanic is separate from the question asking whether a person is white, black, Asian or Pacific Islander, or American Indian. Thus, people are asked to select a racial group and to indicate whether they are of Hispanic origin. Race/ethnic groups represented in this table are not mutually exclusive. The category of white includes only non-Hispanic white. The categories Black or African American, American Indian, and Asian and Pacific Islander include both Hispanic and non-Hispanic. Those in the Hispanic or Latino category include those who may have identified as being in one of the non-White race groups. Starting in 2003, multiple race reporting was allowed by several states.

Data Source

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. 

PRB analysis of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data: National Center for Health Statistics, CDC Wonder 1999-2015 birth data.
Base population statistics: CDC/NCHS, Bridged-Race Population Estimates, 1999-2015.


Updated May 2017.
N.A. - Data not available.
S - Data suppressed due to small number of cases

Last Updated

March 2018