The Issue

Since the early 90s, the teen birth rate in South Carolina has fallen by 67%. This includes a decrease between 2015 and 2016 when the teen birth rate declined by 9% for 15-19 year olds, landing at 23.8 per 1,000. Over the last 25 years, declines have been most substantial among African American youth ages 15-17 whose teen birth rate has decreased by 82% since 1991. 

While success should be celebrated, we must not confuse progress with victory. South Carolina still has the 16th highest teen birth rate in the nation (2015). 3,696 teens gave birth in our state in 2016 and many counties lag behind national averages.

2016 South Carolina Teen Birth Facts:

  • Every 142 minutes, a teen (ages 15-19) gives birth.
  • 3,696 births to teens (ages 15-19) in 2016.
  • 75% of all teen births occurred among 18-19 year olds in 2016.
  • Black teens (ages 15-19) experienced a 14% decrease in teen births from 2015-2016.
  • White teens (ages 15-19) exprienced a 9% decrease in teen births from 2015-2016.
  • Hispanic teens (ages 15-19) experienced a 12% increase in teen births from 2015-2016.

Everyone has a role to play in reducing teen birth rates. Find out how you can get involved. Explore our county pagesstate map and  fact sheets to learn more.

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Teen Pregnancy in South Carolina Sources

  1. US Teen Birth Data: Data Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics, National Vital Statistics Report.
  2. SC Teen Birth Data:  Data Source: Department of Health and Environment Control, S.C. Community Assessment Network (SCAN), Infant Mortality Module: http://scangis.dhec.sc.gov/scan/
  3. Teen sexual behavior data:  Data Source Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Youth Risk Behavior Survey.
  4. Lyle, M. (2017). South Carolina State Survey Technical Report. Columbia, SC: USC Institute for Public Service and Policy Research.