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Fam Plann Perspect. 1995 May-Jun;27(3):120-2.

The impact of requirements for parental consent on minors' abortions in Mississippi.

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1
Alan Guttmacher Institute, New York, USA.

Abstract

Mississippi data for 1993 indicate that the state's new parental consent requirement had little effect on the abortion rate among minors. In a comparison of Mississippi residents who had abortions during the five months before and the six months after the law went into effect, the ratio of minors to adults who sought abortions in the state declined by 13%, a decrease offset by a 32% increase in the ratio of minors to adults who obtained abortions out of state. There was also a 28% drop in the ratio of minors to adults from other states who had abortions in Mississippi. The parental consent requirement increased by 19% the ratio of minors to adults who obtained their procedure after 12 weeks of gestation.

PIP:

Mississippi data for 1993 indicate that the state's new parental consent requirement had little effect on the abortion rate among minors. Although the law was passed in 1986, its constitutionality was challenged in federal court, and enforcement was delayed until June 16, 1993. No other abortion restrictions took effect during 1993, so a relatively clear comparison can be made of the situation before and after the law took effect. The impact of the law was assessed by comparing abortion data for January through May 1993 with data for July through December 1993. The ratio of the number of abortions obtained by minors (younger than age 18) to the number obtained by women 18 or older was calculated. For the period January-May 1993, minors' abortions amounted to 0.1163 of the abortions obtained by older women, while during July-December 1993, that proportion was 0.1188 (p 0.010). During the first 5 months of 1993 the number of abortions performed in Mississippi for minors equalled 0.126 of the number obtained by older women. In July through December, after the parental consent law took effect, the ratio was 0.106, 16% lower than the earlier ratio of 0.126. In a comparison of Mississippi residents who had abortions (n = 4484) during the 5 months before and the 6 months after the law went into effect, the ratio of minors to adults who sought abortions in the state declined by 13%, from 0.127 to 0.111. This decrease was offset by a 32% increase in the ratio of minors to adults (n = 1462) who obtained abortions out of state, from 0.120 to 0.158. There was also a 28% drop in the ratio of minors to adults from other states who had abortions in Mississippi (n = 1066) from 0.120 to 0.087. The results suggest that minors, on average, were delayed by about 3 days. This delay is marginally statistically significant (p = 0.10). The parental consent requirement raised by 19% the ratio of minors to adults who obtained their procedure after 12 weeks of gestation.

PMID:
7672103
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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