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Popul Trends. 2000 Summer;(100):32-9.

Trends in fertility and contraception in the last quarter of the 20th century.


The late 1960s and early 1970s saw major changes in access to birth control. This article reviews trends in fertility and contraception between 1976 when the Family Formation Survey was undertaken and 1998, the latest year for which data are available. There has been an increase in mean age at childbirth over the period. Some of this increase is possibly a result of childbearing in second and subsequent relationships when the women will be older on average. This also has had an impact on their patterns of contraception use. Teenage pregnancy is high on the Government's agenda. Teenage pregnancy continues at constant levels. As the estimated age of first intercourse decreases, there is a continued need for sufficient, accessible and appropriate family planning services.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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