Saturday, September 10, 2011

Chelsea has top abortion rate of all New York City neighborhoods

Officials say the high abortion rates are a reminder of the need for access to birth control.

Officials say the high abortion rates are a reminder of the need for access to birth control.

The tony neighborhood of Chelsea has the highest abortion rate in the city, according to data released yesterday.

While the city's stubbornly high abortion rate was 41%, records show about 67% of all pregnancies were terminated in Chelsea.

Health officials said poverty was a contributing factor in the citywide rate. But the Chelsea numbers - based on 2009 data - underscore the need for all New Yorkers to have access to free birth control.

"It reminds us we have to be sure all New Yorkers have access to contraception and reproductive health services regardless of where they live," said Debbie Kaplan of the agency's Bureau of Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health.

Most neighborhoods with high abortion rates - Jamaica, Central Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant - are low-income areas where women have little access to quality health care. Still, Greenwich Village had the fourth-highest abortion rate, at 60%

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