HARTFORD – For the sixth year in a row, the Connecticut Catholic Conference has reported that abortions in the state of Connecticut have declined, and that abortion providers continue to improve their reporting of accurate, completed documents filed in compliance with the state.
These findings are two highlights from the conference’s seventh annual State of Abortion in Connecticut report for 2014, issued last December. The report also included a review of abortion coverage in the Connecticut Health Insurance Exchange, known as Access Health CT.
The Connecticut Catholic Conference represents the state’s bishops in working with government and the legislative process.
According to the report, Connecticut experienced a decline in the number of abortions for the sixth straight year, decreasing 27 percent from 14,534 abortions performed in 2007 to 10,560 in 2013. The report notes that the trend reflects a national decline in the number of abortions over the last several years.
Similarly, teen abortions in Connecticut among minors (under age 18) also declined for the sixth straight year, dropping 63 percent from 1,168 in 2007 to 433 in 2013.
“While the conference wishes that the number of abortions was down to zero, we are publishing this report to give everyone a chance to review the highlights of these findings,” said Michael C. Culhane, executive director of the conference.
“I don’t know of another state that does this,” he said. But since the conference began tracking abortion trends in 2007, “We now know that abortions are down,” accurate reporting by abortion providers has gone up “and several abortion clinics have closed.”
Mr. Culhane explained that in 2008, the conference pointed out to the Connecticut Department of Public Health that some providers’ reports failed to include pertinent information regarding the age of the patient receiving the abortion and the gestation period of the unborn child being aborted.
He noted that in 2008, 1,511 abortion providers did not file a complete report with DPH. To DPH’s credit, he added, the number of incomplete reports fell to 343 in 2013.
On the topic of abortion coverage through the state’s health insurance exchange, the report stated that people who purchased health insurance coverage through Access Health CT for 2014 had to buy a plan that covered the full range of abortion services.
“There were no plans that respected the beliefs of people who oppose abortion,” according to the report.
This coverage, however, changes in 2015 when several plans will not cover elective abortions.
According to the report, “Only abortions in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is in danger will be covered in these new plans. There will not be a plan that completely excludes all abortion coverage.”
The annual overview of abortion trends in Connecticut listed 19 licensed abortion clinics in the state, including 17 operated by Planned Parenthood. Since 2008, four clinics have closed.
The report was compiled in collaboration with Deacon David Reynolds, legislative liaison for the conference.
The full report is available here.