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Related to: Complex Families, Children and Young PeopleSafeguarding Children and Young People, Births and Fertility, Breastfeeding, Child Protection Plans, Contraception, Sexual Health, Wellbeing

Key Facts:

  • B&NES has a low level of under-18 conceptions.
  • The B&NES conception rate for 15-17 year old females was 12.3 per 1,000 of the 15-17 year old population during 2014. This is significantly lower than the England rate of 22.8, and is the lowest across the South West unitary authorities and county council areas.

What does the data say?

Unicef’s 2013 teenage fertility rates in rich countries comparative overview 1

In Unicef’s 2013 teenage fertility rates in rich countries comparative overview, Unicef compares 29 of the world’s most advanced economies.  According to Unicef’s report, the UK has 29 births per 1,000 girls aged 15 to 19, and so it has one of thehighest rates of teenage conceptions in the table, along with Romania and the United States, the only ones to have 29 or more. The Netherlands, Slovenia and Switzerland have the lowest rates of teenage births, below 5 per 1,000.  [Note: it is important to note that one of the limitations of these league tables is that internationally comparable data on children’s lives is not sufficiently timely.  Between the collection of data in a wide variety of different settings and their publication in quality-controlled, internationally comparable form, the time-lag is typically two to three years.  This means that most of the statistics on child well-being used in this report, though based on the latest available data, apply to the period 2009–2010.]

Under 18's

In 2014 the under-18 conception rate per 1,000 females aged 15 to 17 years was 12.3 across B&NES (37 conceptions), significantly lower than the England rate, 22.8 (Figure 1).  The B&NES rate is the lowest across the South West unitary authorities and county council areas.  Between 1998 and 2014, the under-18 conception rate reduced by 58% across B&NES, compared to a 51% reduction in England.2 

Teenage Conceptions

Figure 1: Under-18 (15-17 years) B&NES conception rates per 1,000 of the 15-17 year old population (1998-2014).  Note: green signifies that the B&NES rate is significantly lower than England. 3 
 
Ward data for under-18 conception rates in B&NES from 2012 to 2014 shows that there were no wards with a significantly higher rate when compared to the overall rate for B&NES.4
 
During 2014 there were 11 live births to under-18 year old mothers in B&NES (the rate is not provided here due to ONS describing the local B&NES rate as ‘low reliability’).5

Under 16's 

Of the 37 conceptions to under 18’s in B&NES during 2014 (see above), 11 were to under 16’s (the rate is not provided here due to ONS describing the local B&NES rate as low reliability).6

For women aged under-16 the proportion of conceptions ending in abortion was 74.2% during 2012-2014 (61.3% during the period 2011-2013).  The latest 2012-14 B&NES figure is higher than the South West average (64.4%) and the England average (61.5%).7

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For more information on teenage contraceptions in the 2015 Bath and North East Somerset Rapid Sexual Health Needs Assessment, please go to Chapter 8 of the report in Sexual Health.