Aleteia logoAleteia logoAleteia
Friday 21 June |
Aleteia logo
separateurCreated with Sketch.

Texas logs nearly 10,000 more births since Heartbeat Act

Baby feet in mothers hands

Liudmila Fadzeyeva | Shutterstock

J-P Mauro - published on 07/15/23

Just before Texas enacted the new law, the state bolstered its Alternatives to Abortion program, which offers education and supplies to new and expecting mothers.

The Texas Heartbeat Act, a 2021 law that prohibits abortion after the detection of a heartbeat, has already led to more live births. According to a new study by researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there have been 9,799 more births between April 2022 and December 2022.

The study, which was peer reviewed and published in , attempted to determine how many babies would have been born had the state not passed the Heartbeat Act. To do this, they examined the birthing rates of all 50 states and Washington, D.C., between the years of 2016 and 2022, and compared them in order to make a model of Texas if the state had not passed the bill. 

The findings of the study suggest that “there would have been” 287,289 live births in Texas without the law. Placed next to the real life figure of 297,088 births, the actual figure is 3.35% higher than the study’s speculation. This percentage, however, did not remain stable throughout the observed nine months of the study. It was highest in December, when birth rates were 5.1% higher than the study’s “model,” and lowest in April and May, at 1.7%.

The study’s findings “strongly suggest that a considerable number of pregnant individuals in Texas were unable to overcome barriers to abortion access,” without exploring other possible reasons why expecting mothers seem to be trending toward carrying to term. The National Catholic Register points out, however, that Texas bolstered its Alternatives to Abortion program just before the law was enacted.

This program works to support women through their pregnancies and for years afterward. With $100 million in funding recently added to the program’s coffers, and even more planned for the fiscal years of 2024 and 2025, the Alternatives to Abortion program can help more new and expecting mothers than ever. The program consists of educational classes to teach about pregnancy, parenting, and adoption, while supporting mothers with material assistance, such as clothing, diapers, and baby formula, etc.

Joe Pojman, the executive director of Texas Alliance for Life, hailed the decrease in abortions and the increase in live births in Texas. He noted that the Alliance for Life expects to see the trend continue in the coming years as the Alternatives to Abortion program’s funding increases: 

“Those children are welcome in Texas, which provides vast resources for women with unplanned pregnancies who carry their unborn children to term, give birth to the babies, and keep or place the babies for adoption,” Pojman said. “Texas [has] more than 300 pregnancy centers, maternity homes, and adoption agencies and countless church-based ministries to care for mothers and babies for years after their births.”

AbortionLawUnited States
Support Aleteia!

Enjoying your time on Aleteia?

Articles like these are sponsored free for every Catholic through the support of generous readers just like you.

Thanks to their partnership in our mission, we reach more than 20 million unique users per month!

Help us continue to bring the Gospel to people everywhere through uplifting and transformative Catholic news, stories, spirituality, and more.

Support Aleteia with a gift today!

Top 10
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.