Abortion rate in Minn. dipped in 2012

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Minnesota reported 10,701 pregnancies that were electively aborted in 2012, which marks a 3 percent decline from 2011 and is the lowest annual total since 10,565 procedures in 1975, the Star Tribune reports.

Why?

One possible factor: increased access to birth control, especially for young women, one spokeswoman for a group that aims to decrease teen pregnancies, told the newspaper.

Nationwide, it's tougher to find recent government stats. The Center for Disease Control reported in November that the United States abortion rate dropped 5 percent between 2008 and 2009, the most recent years for which data is available, the Washington Post reported. That marked the largest decline in the past decade.

Some experts partially attributed the drop to tough economic times, the theory being that some women believed they couldn't afford to have children, the Associated Press reported.

But the Post reported: "The answers seem to have less to do with economic trends, as some have suggested, and potentially more about the more effective contraceptives women are increasingly using."

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