The number of Kansans getting abortions continued to decline in 2011, according to a new report by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
KDHE’s annual vital statistics report shows a 4.6 percent decrease, marking a continued decline since that number peaked in 1996. Of those, 64 percent occurred within the first nine weeks of pregnancy and 88 percent within the first 13 weeks.
More than 85 percent of abortions in 2011 were to unmarried women.
Meanwhile, KDHE said the most notable change for 2011 was the decline in births. That statistic fell to 13.8 live births per 1,000 residents. That’s the lowest level recorded since 1912 when the state started tracking such records. Overall, Kansas mothers gave birth to 39,628 babies, down from the 40,439 reported in 2010.
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The number of deaths in the state increased slightly, and cancer again led the reported causes of death. It was followed by the former number one cause, heart disease. Unintentional injuries continued to be the leading cause of death for relatively young people, ages 1 to 44. For people between 44 and 84 years old, cancer led. And for people older than that, heart disease claimed the most lives.
Tobacco use was noted as a contributing factor in death for nearly 30 percent of men and 17 percent of women.
The number of Kansans getting married hit its lowest point in 20 years, falling by 1.4 percent between 2010 and 2011, part of a state and national trend that has been ongoing for more than a decade.
The average age of first-time brides was about 25, while the first-time grooms averaged 27. Overall, the average age of brides was 30, and the grooms averaged about 32.
KDHE also put together a list noting what happened in Kansas on an average day in 2011. Every day, there were about 109 births, including 40 out of wedlock, 10 births to teenagers and one infant death. Meanwhile, 67 people died — about 15 to cancer, 15 to heart disease, one to suicide and the rest to a batch of common diseases.