A research note on the mortality consequence of denying all wanted induced abortions Journal Article uri icon



  • In this research note, I estimate one component of the mortality impact of denying all wanted induced abortions in the U.S. This estimate quantifies the magnitude of an increase in pregnancy-related death which would occur solely due to the greater mortality risk of continuing pregnancy to term compared to having a legal induced abortion. Using published statistics on pregnancy-related mortality ratios, births, and abortions, I estimate U.S. pregnancy-related deaths by race/ethnicity before and in first and subsequent years of a total abortion ban. I estimate deaths after a total abortion ban by assuming all induced abortions are denied, assuming each abortion denied averts 0.8 births, and increasing exposure to pregnancy-related mortality accordingly. I find that in the first year of ban, estimated pregnancy-related deaths would increase from 675 to 724 (49 additional deaths, 7% increase), and in subsequent years to 815 (140 additional deaths, 21% increase). Non-Hispanic Black women would experience the greatest increase in deaths (33% increase in subsequent years). Estimated pregnancy-related deaths would increase for all race/ethnicities examined. Denying all wanted induced abortions in US would increase pregnancy-related mortality substantially, even if unsafe abortion does not increase.

publication date

  • September 1, 2021

has restriction

  • green

Date in CU Experts

  • January 18, 2022 5:34 AM

Full Author List

  • Stevenson AJ

author count

  • 1

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