Abortion Statistics

BREAKING NEWS: The number of abortions in South Carolina Continue Downward Trend in 2018

Lowest number since 1975

By Holly Gatling, Executive Director, South Carolina Citizens for Life

COLUMBIA, S.C. (July 1, 2019)– Abortions in South Carolina declined again in 2018 with 466 fewer abortions reported than in 2017, according to the newly released report by the State Department of Health and Environmental Control [DHEC].

The total–4,646–is the lowest number of abortions since 1975.

South Carolina Citizens for Life President Lisa Van Riper attributed the downward trend to growing public awareness of the extremism of abortion which is allowed in many states through all nine months of pregnancy and for any reason or no reason.

“We believe the decline in the number of abortions is due to growing awareness through movies like Gosnell and Unplanned, Mrs. Van Riper said. “Legislative debates over the heartbeat bill and the efforts by President Trump and Governor Henry McMaster to stop government funding of abortion businesses, such as Planned Parenthood, all keep the abortion issue front and center. Mrs. Van Riper added, “They cannot hide anymore that abortion is deliberately ending the life of a baby.”

Abortion was a key issue in the recent gubernatorial debate between Governor McMaster and his pro-abortion opponent, former Representative James Smith, she noted. “In spite of the media trying to keep abortion undercover for the past 50 years, the truth is now emerging,” Mrs. Van Riper said. She also praised the work of the pregnancy care centers that provide free care to women experiencing unintended pregnancies, and the “moral educators” such as doctors, lawyers, teachers, and pastors who speak out against abortion.


In 2018, there were 4,646 abortions reported in South Carolina’s three free standing facilities and hospitals. The peak number of abortions in South Carolina, 14,133, occurred in 1988.

The majority of all the abortions by “probable postfertilization age” occurred between six weeks and 13 weeks gestation, according to the report. There were 11 abortions between 14-19 weeks, and six abortions between 20 and 23 weeks.

The 2016 Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act outlawed abortion on demand in South Carolina with the exception of fetal anomalies, meaning disabilities, “inconsistent with life.”

In 2018, Planned Parenthood committed the majority of abortions in its two facilities: 1,068 in Charleston and 1,471 in Columbia, the DHEC report shows. The Greenville Women’s Clinic, a privately owned abortion business, committed 2,073 abortions in 2018.

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