Connecticut’s 2019 abortion report was provided to the Charlotte Lozier Institute upon request. The Connecticut Department of Public Health sent the report in March 2021.
Changes in Connecticut Abortions, 2018-2019
Information on Planned Parenthood’s Connecticut abortion market share is not included in the abortion report.
Abortion Totals and Trends
There were 9,202 abortions reported in Connecticut in 2019, down nearly one percent from the previous year. However, chemical abortions jumped 14 percent between 2018 and 2019, making up 50 percent of the total in 2019 (Fig. 1). The Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) estimates that Connecticut’s 2019 abortion rate was 13.7 abortions per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44, slightly higher than the national rate (Fig. 2). Connecticut’s official abortion totals are 19 to 20 percent lower than estimates from the Guttmacher Institute, indicating that Connecticut’s abortion rate is likely higher. As of November 2021, 40 states had released 2019 abortion statistics, with 21 indicating that abortions had increased from the previous year.
State Report Summary
In 2019, 96 percent of the abortions reported in Connecticut were performed on state residents. Rhode Island residents made up 1.5 percent of the total, while Massachusetts residents composed 0.9 percent and New York residents represented 0.7 percent. Another 0.5 percent were performed on women from other states and territories.
Nine percent of the abortions were obtained by girls between the ages of 12 and 19, including three percent on girls under the age of 18. Twenty-six percent of Connecticut abortions were performed on women in their early twenties, and 28 percent were on women in their later twenties. Thirty-two percent were performed on women in their thirties, and four percent were on women age 40 or older. Age was not reported for two percent of the abortions.
Half the abortions reported in Connecticut in 2019 were chemical abortions. Forty-one percent were suction curettage abortions, and five percent were sharp curettage procedures. Three percent of the abortions were performed via dilation and evacuation. The type of procedure was not reported for just under one percent of the abortions.
Eighty-seven percent of the abortions occurred in the first trimester (12 weeks of gestation or earlier). Five percent were reported between 13 and 15 weeks of gestation, and four percent were performed between 16 and 20 weeks. One percent (95 abortions) were performed at 21 weeks of gestation or later, while four percent occurred at unknown gestational ages. Connecticut limits abortion at viability, but the law contains a broad exception for cases in which there is a risk to the woman’s life or health.
The vast majority of Connecticut abortions (93 percent) were performed in abortion clinics. All but one of Connecticut’s abortion clinics are operated by Planned Parenthood. Six percent of the abortions occurred in hospitals: the majority (569 abortions) were performed as outpatient procedures, but nine abortions were performed on an inpatient basis. Almost one percent of the abortions were performed in doctors’ offices. In 2020, the Food and Drug Administration suspended a requirement that mifepristone be dispensed in-person, and there are now at least four websites that mail abortion pills to Connecticut women.
Connecticut Pregnancy Centers
In 2021, the Connecticut legislature passed a bill to restrict pregnancy center advertising that the state deems deceptive, although there is no evidence that Connecticut pregnancy centers have engaged in deceptive practices. The bill had failed in previous sessions and poses serious constitutional concerns, as it enables viewpoint discrimination against pro-life pregnancy centers and violations of their free speech.
A report from the Connecticut Pregnancy Care Coalition found that in 2018 Connecticut’s 24 pregnancy centers served 2,972 clients and saved communities over $1.2 million. CLI has published a similar report showing that in 2019, pregnancy centers across the country served nearly two million clients with services valuing almost $270 million.
In CLI’s 2016 survey of abortion reporting across the United States, Connecticut was ranked near the bottom of the list at 41st best. Connecticut could improve its reporting by making reports available online. Additionally, the Constitution State could publish demographic information that it already collects, such as race, marital status, and pregnancy history. Connecticut could also collect and report data on complications resulting from abortion, an area of growing concern with the expansion of chemical abortion procedures.
- Rates were calculated by CLI using the following formula: (total number of abortions performed in Connecticut ÷ number of resident women ages 15-44) x 1,000. Rates may differ slightly from previous CLI articles due to revised population estimates. Population estimates were obtained from the CDC WONDER database.