As a firestorm of controversy has engulfed the state over the passage of the nation’s most restrictive anti-abortion bill, APR asked Alabama Medicaid for statistics on the number of abortions approved by the agency over the last two years.
Alabama Medicaid records show that Medicaid approved payment on three abortion procedures in 2018, and two so far in the 2019 fiscal year.
Medicaid provides real-time data, while the overall number of abortions in the state lags behind information by Medicaid.
The Centers for Disease Control reports that 5,899 abortions took place in Alabama during 2015.
“This number includes abortions performed on out-of-state residents but does not include abortions performed on Alabama residents in other states,” according to a fact sheet provided at abort73.com, which is a pro-choice advocacy website.
Statistically, nine percent of all pregnancies in Alabama ended in abortion, according to data supplied by abort73.com. The number does account for miscarriages.
A 2017 report by the Alabama Department of Public Health announced that the infant mortality rate of 7.4 deaths per 1,000 live births was the lowest in Alabama history, down from the 2016 rate of 9.1.
A total of 435 infants born in Alabama died before reaching one year of age in 2017, and 537 infants died in 2016.
Data from the CDC found that only Oklahoma and South Dakota, which are tied, have a higher infant mortality rate than Alabama. The national average infant mortality rate is 5.8 percent.
The CDC also found that 47.1 percent of all births in Alabama were to unmarried mothers. The same statistics show that the state has the third-highest rate of low birth weight babies as well as ranking ninth in teens giving births with 27 percent of all births being by teen mothers. The rankings are from highest to lowest.
“Alabama’s abortion report for 2017, published in October 2018, shows that abortion totals in the state are falling,” according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute, which has the goal to “promote deeper public understanding of the value of human life, motherhood and fatherhood, and to identify policies and practices that will protect life and serve both women’s health and family well-being.”