The Department of Health collects information on pregnancy in Washington State from birth certificates, fetal death certificates, and the abortion reporting system. Abortion data is non-identified and includes only information on induced abortion.
Why should I be concerned about pregnancy and abortion data?
Live births, fetal deaths and abortions, or induced terminations of pregnancies (ITOPs) make up total pregnancies. Abortions, or ITOPs, are defined as interventions performed by licensed clinicians, within state regulations, that are intended to terminate suspected or known ongoing intrauterine pregnancies and do not result in a live birth. ITOP surveillance documents the number and characteristics of women obtaining legal abortions, as well as information about the procedures used. The CDC compiles the information from states to produce national ITOP estimates. ITOP surveillance is necessary to examine trends in public health. It is used to calculate pregnancy, teen pregnancy and abortion rates. It helps evaluate the success of programs promoting equitable access to contraceptive services. It helps monitor changes in clinical practice patterns, procedures used, weeks of gestation, as well as procedure complications and management.
The Center for Health Statistics has significant delays for custom data files and research requests. Standard data files are currently available to order with a valid DSA.
If you have questions, you can email CHS.DataRequests@doh.wa.gov. Normal turnaround times are delayed.
Important Note: A vital records law and rules are in effect that changed the requirements for requesting vital records data.
For increased security of personal and sensitive information, a data sharing agreement (DSA) is required for all vital records data, including death data. There are fees for data files, analysis, and data requests. Each application will be reviewed and vetted for compliance to laws and regulations. Sample Data Sharing Agreement.
Government agencies and Tribal governments may receive birth and fetal death record data with direct identifiers for non-research public health work by signing a DSA.
For more information, visit the Data Request FAQ page.
View the Data
The Department of Health provides information through interactive dashboards. The dashboards present data at County and ACH level for fertility, pregnancies, live births and abortions. Each dashboard displays rate and counts and viewed together, they tell a story of fertility and reproductive health in Washington state. Data in these dashboards are not personally identifiable.
Abortion dashboards include information on induced terminations of pregnancy (ITOPs), where pregnancy was ended on purpose through medical intervention. A fetal death occurs when gestation is 20 or more weeks and not live born. A miscarriage is the loss of a pregnancy at less than 20 weeks gestation. Fetal deaths and miscarriages are not included in the Pregnancy and Abortion dashboards.
These dashboards allow users to:
- Access the Abortion and Pregnancy dashboards
- Interact with charts, maps, and graphs
- Export the data as a spreadsheet.
- Clinical Practice | Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment (ucsf.edu)
- Resources: Info For Families | Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment (ucsf.edu)
- Health of Washington State Report - Maternal and Child Health
- Maternal and Child Health
- Radiation and pregnancy (marchofdimes.org)
- Vital Statistics Technical Notes (PDF) provides more information about all vital statistics data, including data quality and recommended uses.
- 2010-2020 Highlights - Vital Statistics Factsheet (PDF)
- Overview Table (Excel) - provides a historical context for interpreting vital statistics in Washington State from 1910 through 2020.
Join the Vital Statistics GovDelivery for notifications and updates on vital statistics data file availability.
If you have any questions, please contact us at 360-236-4310 or email CHS.DataRequests@DOH.WA.GOV