Ordnungsspezifische Geburtenraten für Deutschland: Schätzungen auf Basis der Perinatalstatistik für die Jahre 2001-2008
Order-specific fertility rates for Germany: estimates from perinatal statistics for the period 2001-2008
Comparative Population Studies, 35:2, 225–244 (2010)
Until 2008, Germany’s vital statistics did not include information on the biological order of each birth. This resulted in a dearth of important demographic indicators, such as the mother’s mean age at first birth and the level of childlessness among women. Researchers have tried to fill this gap by generating order-specific birth rates from survey data, and by combining survey data with vital statistics. This paper takes a different approach by using hospital statistics on births to generate birth order-specific fertility rates for the period 2001 to 2008. Hospital statistics include information on births that took place in German hospitals. Out-of-hospital births, which account for about two percent of all births, are not included in the hospital data. In a sensitivity analysis, we show how robust our estimates are to the inclusion of out-of-hospital births. Our general assessment is that the hospital data are a valuable source for generating order-specific fertility rates, regardless of whether out-of-hospital births are included.
Keywords: Germany, fertility