Almost 7 out of 10 babies are born illegitimate

Of the total 4,114 live births recorded in Catanduanes in 2020, which is equivalent to a crude birth rate (CBR) of 14.9 or 15 births per thousand population, almost 70 percent of the babies were born out of wedlock, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) Catanduanes Provincial Statistical Office reported last week.

In its special release, the PSA said the number of live births in the province in 2020 decreased by 14.4 percent, from the 4,805 live births reported in 2019 in the province.

More than 51.6 percent of these births are male and the remaining 48.4 percent are female, resulting to a birth sex ratio of 95, that is, there are 95 females per 100 males.

Based on the data, the computed general fertility rate is 60.3, meaning, there are 60 births per thousand women who are 15 to 49 years old in the province.

Virac, the municipality with largest population count, reported the highest number of live births of 1,168 or 28.4 percent of the total. This is followed by San Andres with 596 births or 14.5 percent. Panganiban reported the lowest with 132 births or 3.2 percent of the total live births in the province.

In terms of crude birth rates, Gigmoto had the highest, with 18.9 or 19 births per thousand population while Bagamanoc had the lowest, having 12 births per thousand population.

All municipalities had live births with more males except for Virac and Baras. Virac had 51.8 percent females and Baras had 55.2 percent females of their corresponding total live births.

A total of 2,788 or 67.8 percent of the babies born in 2020 were illegitimate or born out of wedlock. Of this total, 25.6 percent were from mothers aged 20 to 24 years. In addition, 469 babies or 11.4 percent of the total births in the province were born from mothers below 20 years old, with the youngest recorded at 13 years old.

Proportion of illegitimate babies highest in Gigmoto

All municipalities had more babies born illegitimate and most were born from mothers between 20 and 24 years old (Table 2). Out of the total babies born in the respective municipalities, Gigmoto had the highest proportion of babies born illegitimate. Almost 79 percent of the 165 total babies born in the said municipality have illegitimate status. This is followed by Bagamanoc with 75.9 percent illegitimate babies of its total of 141 babies. Among the 11 municipalities, Panganiban had the lowest percentage of illegitimate babies with 56.1 percent of its total live births.

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