263756 Investigating Important Variables That Affect Trends in Teenage Pregnancy Rates in the United States, 1957-2009

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Chau-Kuang Chen, EDD , Institutional Research, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN
Aiping Yang, PhD , Industrial Engineering, Beijing Union University, Beijing, China
Rachel Cooper, BA , School of Graduate Studies, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN
Tifini Batts, BS , School of Graduate Studies, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, TN
Background: Teenage pregnancy rates in the United States continue to surpass those of many developed countries. In 2008-2009, 39 per 1000 teenage females aged 15-19 years old became pregnant, and about 4% of all teenage girls gave birth. Adverse health and social outcomes result from teenage pregnancies that afflict both mother and child.

Methods: Dynamic factor analysis (DFA) is often used to analyze general patterns over time, the interaction between risk factors, and the relationship between the outcome variable and risk factors. In this study, the parameters are estimated from the years 1957 to 2009. Six risk factors of teenage pregnancy rates are included in the model: poverty level, cigarette consumption, alcohol consumption, unemployment, per capita income, and percent of people with less than 9 years of education.

Results: The DFA model showed that all risk factors except for “percent of people with less than nine years of education” significantly affect teen pregnancy. Poverty rate, cigarette consumption, and per capita income are significant at the p = 0.01 while alcohol consumption is significant at the p = 0.05.

Conclusions: In this study, DFA provides a method that determines whether components have a lasting effect on teen pregnancy rates. Over a 53 year time period, per capita income has remained a leading predictor of teen pregnancy rates. As the most important risk factor, the means in which per capita income influences teenage pregnancy rates should be further explored in order to create effective interventions.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
(1) Identify the leading risk factor of teen pregnancy in the United States and (2)demonstrate the practical use of sophisticated statistical models, such as dynamic factor analysis, in the field of public health.

Keywords: Teen Pregnancy, Statistics

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have completed a comprehensive literature review on teen pregnancy and its associated risk factors. My education has emphasized statistical modeling and its application in public health settings.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 4178.0: Statistical Poster Session