Births: Final Data for 2019
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      Objectives-This report presents 2019 data on U.S. births according to a wide variety of characteristics. Trends in fertility patterns and maternal and infant characteristics are described and interpreted.

      Methods-Descriptive tabulations of data reported on the birth certificates of the 3.75 million births that occurred in 2019 are presented. Data are presented for maternal age, live- birth order, race and Hispanic origin, marital status, tobacco use, prenatal care, source of payment for the delivery, method of delivery, gestational age, birthweight, and plurality. Selected data by mother's state of residence and birth rates by age are also shown. Trend data for 2010 through 2019 are presented for selected items. Trend data by race and Hispanic origin are shown for 2016–2019.

      Results-A total of 3,747,540 births were registered in the United States in 2019, down 1% from 2018. The general fertility rate declined from 2018 to 58.3 births per 1,000 women aged 15–44 in 2019. The birth rate for females aged 15–19 fell 4% between 2018 and 2019. Birth rates declined for women aged 20–34 and increased for women aged 35–44 for 2018–2019. The total fertility rate declined to 1,706.0 births per 1,000 women in 2019. Birth rates declined for both married and unmarried women from 2018 to 2019. The percentage of women who began prenatal care in the first trimester of pregnancy rose to 77.6% in 2019; the percentage of all women who smoked during pregnancy declined to 6.0%. The cesarean delivery rate decreased to 31.7% in 2019 (Figure 1). Medicaid was the source of payment for 42.1% of all births in 2019. The preterm birth rate rose for the fifth straight year to 10.23% in 2019; the rate of low birthweight was essentially unchanged from 2018 at 8.31%. Twin and triplet and higher-order multiple birth rates both declined in 2019 compared with 2018.

      This report presents detailed data on numbers and characteristics of births in 2019, birth and fertility rates, maternal demographic and health characteristics, medical and health care utilization, source of payment for the delivery, and infant health characteristics. A report of provisional birth statistics for 2019 presented data on selected topics based on a sample of nearly all (99.96%) 2019 births (1); a National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) Data Brief presented selected characteristics based on final data for 2019 births (2).

      Suggested citation: Martin JA, Hamilton BE, Osterman MJK, Driscoll AK. Births: Final Data for 2019. National Vital Statistics Reports; vol 70 no 2. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2021. DOI:



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