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Births rose in 2021 but not enough to catch up to prepandemic levels

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Posted at 1:20 PM, May 24, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-24 13:20:49-04

U.S. births bumped up last year, but the number of babies born was still lower than before the coronavirus pandemic.

The 1% increase was a bit of a rebound from 2020.

The first year of the COVID-19 pandemic witnessed the largest one-year drop in births in nearly a half-century.

Government officials think last year's uptick reflects pregnancies that were postponed during the early days of the pandemic.

Deliveries were way down in January of 2021 but improved as the year went on.

But the government report released Tuesday shows there were still about 86,000 fewer births last year than in 2019.

The birth rate from 2021 is still considered an improvement from the consistent decline observed in the U.S. since 2014.

Low birth rates can spell out bad news for the country, including not having enough people to care for its older adults and not enough workers.

However, higher birth rates can also create a strain on resources.