The Newnan Times-Herald

Opinion

Velsmid’s abortion stats misleading


  • By The Newnan Times-Herald
  • |
  • Aug. 09, 2018 - 6:14 PM

I write in comment about a letter by Dr. Michael Velsmid concerning rates of abortion in the U.S.

He states that "Today, four out of 10 pregnancies end in … abortion." That is a 40 percent level of abortion and is untrue. According to the CDC in their abortion surveillance report for 2014 – the latest year information was available – for every 1,000 live births, there were 186 abortions.

This is 18.6 percent, nowhere near the 40 percent rate that Dr. Velsmid quotes.

Importantly, this rate includes abortions due to medical reasons affecting the mother and the fetus.

I believe he is misinterpreting a statement by the Guttmacher Institute, which is a research and policy organization which specializes in sexual and reproductive health rights. In a recent article in "The American Journal of Public Health," Guttmacher Institute researchers stated that "nearly 1 in 4 women in the United States( 23.7 percent) will have an abortion by age 45."

This is across the reproductive life – ages 15-45 – of all women in America. If anything, this quotation shows that legal, safe abortion and affordable, reliable contraception are important public health concerns that cannot be cured by denying access to abortion and contraception to women.

I will not bother to comment on his ridiculous statements trying to compare legal abortion to infanticide and euthanasia.

Paula Darden

Hogansville