The Issue

Since the early 90s, the teen birth rate in South Carolina has fallen by 64%. This includes a decrease between 2014 and 2015 when the teen birth rate declined by 8% for 15-19 year olds, landing at 26.1 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 79% 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. 4,020 teens gave birth in our state in 2015 and many counties lag behind national averages.

2015 South Carolina Teen Birth Facts:

  • Every 131 minutes, a teen (ages 15-19) gives birth.
  • 4,020 teens (age 15-19) gave birth in 2015.
  • 74% of all teen births occurred among 18-19 year olds in 2015.
  • 40% of high school students report they have ever had sex.
  • 31% of high school students reported using a birth control method (pill, patch, ring, IUD, implant).

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.


Teen Pregnancy in South Carolina Sources

  1. SC Teen Birth Data:  Data Source: Department of Health and Environment Control, S.C. Community Assessment Network (SCAN), Infant Mortality Module:
  2. US Teen Birth Data: Data Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics, National Vital Statistics Report.
  3. Teen sexual behavior data:  Data Source Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Youth Risk Behavior Survey.
  4. Oldendick, R. (2013). Summary of findings for the South Carolina State Survey. Columbia, SC: USC Institute for Public Service and Policy Research.