A new government report, titled America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2007, was released this week. Health experts say the findings serve as a "national report card" for the state of the health of the country's children.
- Fewer teens are having sex, and the teen birth rate hit an all time low in 2005.
- Children receiving recommended vaccinations are on the rise, up from 71% to 81%.
- Exposure to secondhand smoke has been reduced, but is still a significant 59%.
- In the 6-12 year old age group, the percentage of obesity tripled over the last 25 years.
- Violent crime is down significantly from 2003, though there was a small spike in 2005.
- About 88% of teens finish high school or earn a diploma.
- The number of children living in homes considered "food insecure" dropped, and the number of children living in homes where at least one parent was employed rose.
- Eighty-eight percent of young adults ages 18 to 24 had completed high school with a diploma or an alternative credential such as a General Education Development certificate in 2005. This represented a 1 percentage point increase from 2004 and a 4 percentage point increase since 1980.