Registered live births 'generally decreasing', says PSA


The number of registered live births showed a "generally decreasing trend" in the past eight years, with 2020 registering the highest decline at 8.7 percent, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.

"In 2020, a total of 1,528,684 live births were registered, which is equivalent to a crude birth rate (CBR) of 14.1 or 14 births per thousand population," it said in a statement.

PSA noted that the number of registered live births has been showing a generally decreasing trend from 2012 to 2020.

"A decrease of -14.6 percent in the registered live births was noted in the past eight years, from 1,790,367 in 2012 to 1,528,684 in 2020," it said.

"The highest decline rate was noted in 2020 (-8.7 percent) compared to the total registered live births of 1,673,923 in 2019," it added.

On average, 4,177 babies were born daily, which translates to 174 babies born per hour or approximately three babies born per minute, PSA said.

More males born than females; highest births in Calabarzon

PSA said that more males (796,543 or 52.1 percent) were born than females (732,141 or 47.9 percent), resulting in a sex ratio at birth of 109 males per 100 females in 2020.

Of the total live births, 58.8 percent were born in Luzon, 18.3 percent in the Visayas, and 23.0 percent in Mindanao.

Among regions, Calabazon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon) recorded the highest number of birth occurrences with a 14.5 percent share.

This was followed by the National Capital Region (NCR) (13.8 percent) and Central Luzon (11.8 percent).

More babies born outside mother's usual residence

PSA said that six out of the 17 regions reported more birth occurrences in the region than the number of births from its residents.

"This may be due to expectant mothers giving birth outside of their usual place of residence and/or non-residents giving birth in the region," it noted.

In Luzon, births that occurred in NCR exceeded births to mothers residing in the region by 12,209 births.

"Notably, expectant mothers from Calabarzon gave birth in NCR where most hospitals and health care facilities were located. In Mindanao, the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) had the most births outside the usual residence of the mother with 4,078 births," it pointed out.

Most births registered in September

In 2020, most registered births occurred in September at 146,500, or 9.6 percent of the total births in the country.

It was followed by the months of October (9.5 percent share), November (9.1 percent), and January (9.1 percent).

Meanwhile, the least number of births (7.1 percent) was registered in March.

"In terms of daily average, September recorded the highest with an average of 4,883 births per day, which translates to 203 births per hour," PSA said.

"On the contrary, March had the lowest daily average number of births with 3,496, equivalent to 146 births per hour," it added.

Majority of babies born to mothers aged 25-29

"In 2020, majority of registered births had parents aged 25-29 years (419,726 or 27.5 percent for mothers while 386,608 or 25.3 percent for fathers)," PSA said.

"However, babies born to adolescent mothers (157,060 or 10.3 percent), those younger than 20 years old, were more than three times of babies sired by adolescent fathers (48,762 or 3.2 percent)," it pointed out.

The median age of mothers was 27 years old while the median age for fathers was 30 years old, which means that half of the births in 2020 were to mothers and fathers who were at least 27 years old and 30 years old, respectively, PSA said.

"High-risk" age of pregnancy covers the age group 17 years old and younger (3.7 percent), and 35 years old and over (15.8 percent).

"This is because childbearing in these age groups is more likely to have complications during pregnancy and labor that may result to higher morbidity and mortality to both mother and child," PSA explained.

About 10.1 percent of the births in 2020 were to mothers aged 15-19 years, while around 15.8 percent were to mothers 35 years old and over.

Moreover, the adolescent birth rate,2 or the number of births to women ages 15–19 per 1,000 women in that age group, was 31 per 1,000 women in 2020.

More than half of babies born to unwed mothers

PSA also noted that more than half (870,820 or 57.0 percent) of the total registered live births in 2020 were born out of wedlock.

The three regions that recorded the highest number of illegitimate children based on the usual residence of the mother were Calabarzon (16.4 percent), NCR (15.6 percent), and Central Luzon (11.8 percent).

Furthermore, 12 regions reported at least half of its registered births in 2020 as illegitimate, led by NCR (68.4 percent), Eastern Visayas (66.9 percent), and Calabarzon (61.5 percent).

Meanwhile, ARMM recorded the highest proportion of legitimate births at 94.6 percent.

"Mothers aged 20-24 years had the highest number of illegitimate babies in 2020, contributing 296,844 or 34.1 percent of the total illegitimate births that year. This was followed by mothers aged 25-29 years, who contributed 222,835 or 25.6 percent of the total illegitimate births in 2020," PSA said.

"By age group of mothers, highest proportion of illegitimate births were to adolescent mothers aged under 15. Of the total number of babies born to adolescent mothers aged under 15, 96.0 percent were illegitimate. This was followed by births to adolescent mothers aged 15-19 years and mothers aged 20-24 years, with 91.8 percent and 75.9 percent, respectively," it added.

However, the least proportion of illegitimate babies (26.0 percent) was to mothers aged 45 years old and over.