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Canadian women obtained fewer induced abortions in 2005 compared with the previous year, and the decline occurred mostly among women under the age of 20.
A total of 96,815 induced abortions were performed on Canadian women in 2005, down 3.2% from 100,039 in 2004. As a result, the induced abortion rate edged down from 14.6 abortions in 2004 for every 1,000 women aged 15 to 44, to 14.1 in 2005.
Induced abortion rates fell in every age group, except among women aged 35 to 39, where it remained the same. Teenage women under the age of 20 experienced the largest decline in rates from 13.8 for every 1000 women in 2004 to 13.0 in 2005. The induced abortion rate for these women has declined gradually since 1996 when it peaked at 18.9.
The crude birth rate for teenaged women has also continued to decline. In 1996, there were 18.6 live births for every 1,000 women under 20. By 2005, this had dropped to 11.1.
The number of induced abortions for every 100 live births fell to 28.3 in 2005 from 29.7 in 2004.
Induced abortions continued to be most common among women in their early 20s. They accounted for 31% of all women who obtained an induced abortion in 2005. On average, 28 women out of every 1,000 aged 20 to 24 obtained an induced abortion.
Induced abortion rates remained about the same, or increased, among women in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, British Columbia, and in the combined Nunavut, Yukon, and Northwest Territories.
They declined in Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.
Data for 2005 cover induced abortions performed in hospitals and clinics in provinces and territories, except those performed in Manitoba clinics, which have been unavailable since 2004. As of 2004, induced abortions obtained by Canadian women in some American states are no longer collected. Users should be aware of certain limitations with the Therapeutic Abortion Survey. There are recognized issues concerning coverage, increased submission of aggregate counts instead of detailed records, and an increased reliance on age estimates.