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U.S. Abortion Statistics

Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in the United States.

U.S. Abortion Statistics: Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in the United States.

Primary nationwide abortion statistics for the United States are available from two sources—privately from the Guttmacher Institute (AGI) and publicly from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Guttmacher’s numbers, published every three years, come from direct surveys of all known and suspected abortion providers in the United States. The CDC numbers, published annually, are derived from actual counts of every abortion reported to state health departments. Unfortunately, California, Maryland, and New Hampshire do not publicly report abortion totals. As such, Guttmacher’s abortion numbers are more complete, but they are approximations. Since only 52% of queried providers responded to Guttmacher’s latest survey, health department data was used for an additional 17%. Abortion totals were estimated for the remaining 31%. All told, Guttmacher states that 84% of their 2020 abortion total was based on actual abortion counts. The remaining 16% was estimated. “It is possible,” Guttmacher concedes, “that we consistently underestimated or overestimated these caseloads, which would mean that our count is inaccurate.” The information on this page has been gleaned from Guttmacher and the CDC—along with public state health department data—to provide an overview of the frequency and demography of abortion. Additional secondary statistics have been taken from the National Abortion Federation's (NAF) teaching text on abortion, Management of Unintended and Abnormal Pregnancy: Comprehensive Abortion Care.


  • Based on available state-level data and #WeCount estimates, approximately 924,000 abortions took place in the United States in 2022—down from an estimated 974,000 abortions in 2021.
  • According to the Guttmacher Institute, an estimated 930,160 abortions took place in the United States in 2020—up from 862,320  in 2017. Guttmacher's selected annual abortion estimates for the last 20+ years are listed below: 
    Annual Abortion Totals by Year
    2020 2017 2014 2011 2008 2005 2002 2000
    930,160 862,320 926,240 1,060,000 1,210,000 1,210,000 1,290,000 1,310,000
    Annual Abortion Totals by Year
    2020 2017 2014 2011
    930,160 862,320 926,240 1,060,000
    2008 2005 2002 2000
    1,210,000 1,210,000 1,290,000 1,310,000
  • State-level data indicates that approximately 887,000 abortions took place in the United States in 2019. That's up from approximately 872,000 abortions in 2018.
  • In 2021, approximately 21% of U.S. pregnancies (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion.1
  • According to the United Nations' 2013 report, only nine countries in the world have a higher reported abortion rate than the United States. They are: Bulgaria, Cuba, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, Sweden, and Ukraine.*

    *Though the UN lists China's official abortion rate at 19.2, China's actual abortion rate is likely much higher. According to China's 2010 census, there were approximately 310 million women of reproductive age in the country. An estimated 13-23 million abortions happen annually in China, resulting in an adjusted abortion rate of 41.9-74.2. The abortion rate is the number of abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44.

  • In 2021, the highest percentage of pregnancies were aborted in the District of Columbia (31%), Illinois (28%), and Florida (27%). The lowest percentage of pregnancies were aborted in Missouri (0.2%), South Dakota (1.6%), and Wyoming (1.6%). (CDC).
  • In 2021, approximately 29% of all pregnancies in New York City (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion (CDC).
  • The annual number of legal induced abortions in the United States doubled between 1973 and 1979, and peaked in 1990 (CDC).
  • More than 60 million legal abortions have occurred in the United States since 1973.


  • In 2021, unmarried women accounted for 87% of all abortions (CDC).
  • Among married women, 4% of 2021 pregnancies (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion. Among unmarried women, 29% ended in abortion (CDC).
  • Women in their 20s accounted for the majority of abortions in 2021 and had the highest abortion rates (CDC).
  • Adolescents under 15 years obtained 0.2% of all 2021 abortions; women aged 15–19 years accounted for 8.1% (CDC).
  • Percentage of 2021 Reported Abortions by Age of Mother (CDC):
    <15 years 15–19 years 20–24 years 25–29 years 30–34 years 35–39 years ≥40 years
    0.2% 8.1% 28.3% 28.7% 20.4% 10.8% 3.6%
    <15 years 15–19 years 20–24 years 25–29 years
    0.2% 8.1% 28.3% 28.7%
    30–34 years 35–39 years ≥40 years
    20.4% 10.8% 3.6%
  • Women living with a partner to whom they are not married account for 25% of abortions but only about 10% of women in the population (NAF).
  • In 2021, women who had not aborted in the past accounted for 57% of all abortions; women with one or two prior abortions accounted for 35%, and women with three or more prior abortions accounted for 8% (CDC).
  • Among women who obtained abortions in 2021, 39% had no prior live births; 44% had one or two prior live births, and 17% had three or more prior live births (CDC).
  • Among white women, 10% of 2021 pregnancies (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion. Among black women, 33% ended in abortion (CDC).
  • Black women were 4.5 times more likely to have an abortion in 2021 than white women (CDC).
  • The abortion rate of non-metropolitan women is about half that of women who live in metropolitan counties (NAF).
  • The abortion rate of women with Medicaid coverage is three times as high as that of other women (NAF).
  • In 2014, 30% of aborting women identified themselves as Protestant and 24% identified themselves as Catholic (AGI).



  • In 2021, 81% of reported U.S. abortions occurred prior to the 10th week of gestation; 93% occurred prior to 14 weeks’ gestation (CDC).
  • Percentage of 2021 Reported Abortions by Weeks of Gestation* (CDC):
    ≤6 wks 7-9 wks 10-13 wks 14-15 wks 16-17 wks 18-20 wks ≥21 wks
    44.8% 36.0% 12.7% 2.7% 1.5% 1.5% 0.9%

    *Gestational weeks are measured from the first day of the woman's last menstruation and not from the day of conception. Though it does not provide an accurate fetal age (which is roughly 2 weeks less than the gestational age), it is the simplest way for an OB/GYN to age a pregnancy since the day of conception is often not known. Hence, if an abortion occurs at 8 weeks gestation, it is actually aborting a 6 week embryo. The images on our Prenatal Development and Abortion Pictures pages are more precisely captioned with fetal ages in accordance with standard teaching texts on prenatal development.



  • In 2017, abortions were performed in 1,587 different facilities, a 5% decline from 2014. (AGI).
  • In 2017, there were 808 abortion clinics in the United States, a 2% increase from 2014.
  • Between 2014 and 2017, the number of hospitals performing abortions declined by 19%, from 638 to 518 (AGI).
  • In 2017, 72% of U.S. abortion clinics performed abortion through 12 weeks’ gestation, 25% performed abortion through 20 weeks, and 10% performed abortion through 24 weeks (AGI).
  • In 2014, 4% of U.S. abortions occured in hospitals; 1% occured in physician's offices. The other 95% occured in freestanding abortion clinics—without any established doctor-patient relationship (AGI).


  • In 2020, six women were reported to have died as a result of complications from induced abortion. Between 1973-2020, a reported 531 women died due to complications from legal abortion (CDC).
  • The number of deaths attributable to legal induced abortion was highest before the 1980s (CDC).
  • In 1972 (the year before abortion was federally legalized), a total of 24 women died from causes known to be associated with legal abortions, and 39 died as a result of known illegal abortions (CDC).


  • In 2022, Planned Parenthood stated that the average cost of a surgical abortion in the first trimester is $600. They stated the average cost of a medical abortion to be $580. The reported cost range for a 2nd-trimester abortion is $715-$2000.2


  • Induced abortions usually result from unintended pregnancies, which often occur despite the use of contraception (CDC).
  • In 2014, 51% of women having abortions used birth control during the month they became pregnant. (AGI).
  • 9 in 10 women at risk of unintended pregnancy are using a birth control method (AGI).
  • Oral contraceptives, the most widely used reversible method of contraception, carry failure rates of 6 to 8% in actual practice (NAF).


  • 40% of minors having an abortion report that neither of their parents knew about the abortion (AGI).
  • 39 states currently enforce parental consent or notification laws for minors seeking an abortion: AL, AK, AR, AZ, CO, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WI, WV, and WY. The Supreme Court ruled that minors must have the alternative of seeking a court order authorizing the procedure (AGI).


  • The U.S. Congress has barred the use of federal Medicaid funds to pay for abortions, except when the woman's life would be endangered by a full-term pregnancy or in cases of rape or incest (AGI).
  • 17 states (AK, AZ, CA, CT, HI, IL, MA, MD, MN, MT, NJ, NM, NY, OR, VT, WA and WV) use public funds to pay for abortions for some poor women. About 14% of all abortions in the United States are paid for with public funds—virtually all from the state (AGI).
  • In 2014, 88,466 abortions in California were paid for with public funds. Public funds paid for 45,722 abortions in New York (AGI).

This page was last updated on January 23, 2024. To cite this page in a research paper, visit: "Citing Abort73 as a Source."


  1. This percentage was arrived at by comparing the number of 2021 births reported by the CDC (3,664,292) and the number of abortions estimated for 2021 (974,000).
  2. Planned Parenthood. “How much does an abortion cost?”  April 29, 2022: https://www.plannedparenthood.org/blog/how-much-does-an-abortion-cost

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